Posted in Real Estate Sales Tips

Do I Need a Home Inspection?

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Doing Your Due Diligence?

 

In Florida, home sellers (and their listing agents) are required to disclose any defects that are not readily observable and materially affect the property value. (Ch. 475.2701, F.S.) With that being said, there may be times when certain defects are unknown to the current homeowner.

The home inspection is a major step in the due diligence process of purchasing real property and serves to protect the buyer from expending money on a property that may be worth less than anticipated if material defects later become known. Moreover, oftentimes the lender will require a home inspection and/or a Wood Destroying Organism (WDO) report prior to approving a loan for closing.

Q:  What does a home inspector examine?

A:  The home inspector will examine the exterior and interior construction of the property, the mechanical and electrical systems, as well as the plumbing system. Below is a list of the common elements observed during a home inspection.

Exterior Inspection:

  • Topography and foundation or crawlspace
  • Driveway, sidewalk, porch & patio areas
  • Walls, siding, trim, windows & doors
  • Roof
  • Garage(s) and/or carport(s)

Interior Inspection:

  • HVAC and/or wall unit(s)
  • Electrical system
  • Plumbing, well/septic system
  • Energy efficiency

Environmental Inspection:

  • Radon gas
  • Lead-based paint
  • Asbestos
  • Radiation
  • Other external concerns

Are home inspectors licensed?

A:  In the state of Florida, home inspectors are required to be licensed. Check with your state’s division of licensing or ask your local real estate agent.

Action Steps:

  1. Use a Seller’s Property Disclosure Statement when you are buying/selling a residential property.
  2. During your walk-through, inquire of any observable defects/recent repairs.
  3. Contact your local government’s permitting department to inquire of any open/closed permits on the subject property. The most important aspect of this step is to ensure that any work done in the past was permitted, up to code, and that all permits are closed. Finding out there is an open permit prior to closing can cause delays and frustrate the closing process, not to mention the potentially high repair costs that may surface.

In closing, it is highly recommended you hire a licensed, insured, and experienced home inspector, ask the seller for a property disclosure statement, and check the property history with your local permitting department. While these tasks may be a bit tedious, your real estate professional should be there to guide you through the process and ensure that you have a smooth closing!

 

Author:

John holds four degrees (law, hotel management, literature & computer science, and theater), two decades of technical education, and has twenty years of extensive work experience in the fields of real estate property valuation, mortgage finance, and home sales. John is the founder and Broker-Owner of Coleman Tanner Realty 🏡 in Florida. As a writer, John has been self-publishing books since 2012. His latest nonfiction book, The Entrefluential Broker, is a DIY guide to launching your own real estate brokerage business. John’s forthcoming book, STR Conversions, will inform real estate investors of how to quadruple their rental income via his new “hotel hacking” strategy. He plans on taking his lessons to online and offline speaking stages to share his tactics with investors in the second half of 2022. To discuss speaking engagements and workshops, interested parties can send inquiries to John’s assistant, John Paul, at TELbookings@gmail.com. In addition to writing, John has a love for filmmaking that began while studying theater at Miami-Dade College in 1994. Most recently, he completed the 14-Day Filmmaker Academy by contemporary tv commercial experts, Paul Xavier and Anthony Gallo. 🎥 John plans on overseeing the shooting of in-house “reality tv” videos for his real estate practice, Coleman Tanner Realty. 🎬 John also aspires to executive produce independent films that will be a hybrid of the film noir + murder mystery genre and something new, futuristic, and aesthetically appealing to modern day film enthusiasts (think, anime in real life meets Sherlock Holmes). 🌹John also enjoys romantic comedies and Hallmark dramas (he wrote a romantic novella titled Faithfully, available on Amazon under the pen name of Jack Morgan) - so stay tuned for romance films as well. When he’s not 🖥 online studying film production, AirBnB, real estate, online marketing, or watching movies and his favorite TV shows on Netflix or the tube 📺 for inspiration, 🎼 John also enjoys playing the guitar 🎸 and piano 🎹 in his free time. John is also learning Tai Chi and White Tiger QiGong on the tube, and was a former Judo student while attending FIU.

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