What to Look For in a Home Inspector

There are hundreds, if not thousands, of home inspection companies out there. Damon Becknel, an experienced entrepreneur and land developer, understands that a potential homeowner needs to do their research and choose the right company for their home inspection, as it could be the difference between a good and bad deal. There should be no problem finding a reputable inspector in your area because most states require inspectors to register with other state boards and maintain continuing education hours every year.

A good inspector should have the following qualities:

Knowledge of Home Construction Materials

Knowing the different materials and construction methods used in homes is imperative to any home inspector. For example, a good inspector will know that most new homes built around 1980 have wiring installed behind drywall rather than metal conduit.

Experience

A home inspector should have at least two years of experience inspecting homes under typical conditions. Experience not only allows an inspector to find problems more quickly, but it also helps them understand how the average homeowner thinks when walking through a house with potential flaws.

Knowledge of Concepts and Technology

A home inspector needs to stay up-to-date with technological advancements in the residential construction industry because knowing what vital components are used in new homes can help you understand the house better. For example, an inspector who doesn’t know about sealed combustion furnaces might not note them when inspecting older homes; this could mean that any problems that come up down the road will be missed.

Licensure and Insurance

Purchasing a home is one of the biggest investments you’ll ever make in your life, so it only makes sense to hire an inspector with proper licensure and insurance. Licensure proves that inspectors have passed required courses and examinations by their state or local government. It also protects homeowners from “unqualified” inspectors. Insurance protects both you and your inspector if an inspection leads to legal action.

National Home Inspector Certification Program (NHICP) Certification

The NHICP certification is a great industry standard because it ensures that an inspector has passed specific courses and because it requires them to abide by a strict code of ethics. The various levels of certification are awarded based on the level of knowledge or experience, so take some time to research which classes your inspector completed before making a purchase.

Ability to Identify Areas of Concern

All home inspectors should identify areas of concern, but they must avoid speculation about whether or not a problem is serious. For example, if an inspector notes that the insulation in your attic is wet and has animal droppings in it, they might refer to it as “not livable” in their report; however, this doesn’t help you understand the scale of the issue.

Transparency

An inspector should be open about their processes, opinions, findings, and potential costs involved after the inspection is completed. If they are unwilling to spend time explaining what could happen if corrective action isn’t taken on a particular problem, they may not be willing to make sure it gets done properly. This includes everything from routine fixes to major overhauls that might be needed down the road.

Final Thoughts

Do your research before hiring a home inspector for peace of mind. It’s also wise to read online reviews from past customers because these can give you an idea of how knowledgeable and open they are about their services. In any case, make sure to hire a qualified inspector who has demonstrable experience doing inspections under real-world conditions.

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