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Home Inspection

Home inspections are an essential component of real estate transactions for millions of buyers, sellers, and Realtors. Whether you are shopping for a previously-owned house or a brand new house, an inspection provides insight to the condition of the home you are buying. If you are putting your house on the market, an inspection helps hasten the sale and can generate a higher price. And if you are a Realtor, a professional home inspection report serves as an ideal marketing tool that also helps protect you against post-closing hassles.

In essence, a home inspection is a visual examination of a house and property. When performed by a qualified professional, it includes:

• A thorough visual inspection of the structure

   (inside and out, from foundation to roof).

• An examination of all major systems.

• An objective evaluation of the condition of more than 400 items.

• A printed report covering all findings and identifying potential concerns.

The following pages provide a more detailed description of a home inspection and additional useful information on the following:

• Who needs a home inspection.

• What a home inspection is... and is not.

• Benefits of a home inspection.

• Preparing for a home inspection.

• How to choose a home inspector.

WHO NEEDS A HOME INSPECTION?    

You do if you are shopping for a home.

A home inspection can help you avoid costly and unpleasant mistakes and provide peace of mind. It will help you identify the house that is right for you, and alert you to potential concerns prior to closing the deal. It will also teach you about your home and its operating systems.

You do if you want to sell your house.

A pre-marketing home inspection provides the seller with an objective evaluation of the home’s condition before the house is put on the market. Consequently, you are provided with guidance in preparing your house for maximum sales appeal. A home inspection not only encourages a faster sale and a better price, it also helps ensure compliance with disclosure requirements.

You do if you are a homeowner.

Even if you do not intend to sell your home, a thorough inspection of your house and property every four to five years can yield significant returns. First and foremost, a professional inspector can identify conditions that may be present or may lead to safety hazards for family members. Furthermore, periodic inspections can help detect potential problems early, before they become severe and costly.

This guide has been created to educate consumers looking to fulfill the increasing demand for home inspections across the country; especially as real estate values fluctuate, disclosure requirements intensify, home buyers become more cautious, and litigation against sellers and Realtors climbs to unprecedented levels.

As recently as 1980 it was caveat emptor (buyer beware), where fewer than one in ten homes sold were inspected. Today that number still is only four times greater but growing rapidly In past decades, when the services of professional home inspectors were virtually nonexistent, buyers were forced to gamble on hidden problems, unexpected repair costs, and sometimes major disasters. Today’s smart consumer demands better information.

While mandatory disclosure of a home’s condition prior to sale is not yet widespread in Canada, a growing number of real estate boards are including inspection clauses in purchase agreements. The vendor's responsibility to disclose depends upon the nature of the defect. For this reason, careful and thorough inspection prior to purchase is crucial. A recent study revealed that 42% of home buyers face unexpected repairs costing an average of $500 after moving into their new home; more than one in nine buyers must spend more than $1,000 for repairs.

WHAT A HOME INSPECTION IS...    

A home inspection is a thorough visual examination of the home and property.

The process usually takes two to three hours, during which time the house is examined from the ground up. The inspection includes observation and when appropriate, operation of the plumbing, heating, air conditioning, electrical, and appliance systems, as well as structural components: roof, foundation, basement, exterior and interior walls, chlinney, doors, and windows.

When conducted by a professional, a home inspection covers about 1,000 check-points in approximately 400 items around the home.

Findings should be provided to you in the form of a comprehensive report. It is vital that such a report include an objective evaluation of the condition of the home, clearly relating existing defects and indicating potential problems.

WHAT A HOME INSPECTION IS NOT...   

A home inspection is not an appraisal, and vice versa.

An appraisal is the formal process of estimating a property’s value as it relates to a mortgage loan or mortgage insurance. It does not itemize defects or reflect potential problems in the home, Even a CMHC appraisal does not fully attest to the condition of the home. To ensure an objective evaluation of a home’s condition, many lenders encourage home buyers to use private inspection services, and some employers reimburse home inspection fees as part of their relocation programs.

A home inspection report is not a warranty.

Because a home inspection is a visual examination of the home and operating systems, it is not technically exhaustive. There is no assurance, expressed or implied, that equipment will not break down at some future date. However, such protection is available when a home inspection is complemented by a home warranty When the services are used in conjunction with one another, a home warranty covers the items that were serviceable at the time of the inspection and then may subsequently fail due to normal wear and tear.

A home inspection does not detect every conceivable flaw.

It is an inspection of those areas and items that can be seen. Home inspectors cannot see through foundations, floors or walls, and cannot inspect areas or items that are inaccessible.

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Suresh Jaura Broker

Web Max Realty Inc. Brokerage

301-211 Consumers Road Toronto ON M2J 4G8
Office: 1-866-726-5222  Direct Line: 416.315.7253

Not intended to solicit buyers and sellers currently under contract with a broker

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