Here in Ohio, our median cost of a home still sits somewhere around $150,000.
Of course, that’s in addition to a spectrum of other fees and associated costs, from closing costs and property taxes to HOA fees and repairs. So when you’re in the process of buying a home, you may very well balk at the idea of one more fee, and for something as seemingly simple as a home inspection.
However, spending a few hundred dollars now can save you thousands in years to come—but if you’re looking to save time and money sooner rather than later, we have a few simple tips to help. Keep reading for some simple ways to save time and money on your home inspection.
1. Vet Your Candidates
If you want to save time and money while getting great service, it pays to consider the person you’re partnering with—and to thoroughly vet your candidates.
Seek recommendations from multiple sources, including your real estate agent, friends and family, coworkers and neighbors, and even the American Society of Home Inspectors. You might also want to consider checking out the person’s online reviews and testimonials, both on their site and on third-party review aggregators like Yelp or Facebook. Beyond that, don’t hesitate to ask for references if you have any lingering questions that need answering.
These steps may seem intensive, but they ensure that you’re partnering with a qualified candidate who comes recommended and knows the ropes.
In addition, one tip many homeowners fail to remember is asking for sample inspection reports. Any good home inspector will be able to provide you with one, and they can be a goldmine when it comes to finding the right candidate and saving time in the long-term.
If the inspection reads like a college textbook and you struggle to understand, it may be a sign that this candidate isn’t a good match for you. Ideally, a home inspector will be able to break even the most complex issues into digestible pieces, offering clear explanations of a home’s defects. Unless you want to spend a great deal of time deciphering future reports from this person, you may want to go with another option.
2. Ask Around When It Comes to Pricing
Depending on the size and type of property, the cost of a home inspection can be anywhere from $300-500. For the average 2,000-square-foot-home, however, you might expect to pay around $400.
However, if you want to be sure you’re working with a reputable company that’s charging you a fair price, you may need to ask around. See what other local inspectors are charging for homes like the one in question, or shop online—regionally—to see if any home inspectors publish fees on their site.
3. See the Home Yourself
Want to avoid the confusing back-and-forth conversations about a property’s defects? Many time-consuming home inspection issues can be avoided when the buyer sees the home in person themselves
Do Your Own Pre-Inspection
If you want to go above and beyond, especially if you anticipate any issues, you may even want to do a pre-inspection of your own. You may think there’s not much you’d notice as a layperson, but you might be surprised. Look at the following areas when you have a chance to see the house:
- Check the walls and ceilings for discoloration
- Try the light switches to see if the electrical layout works
- Inspect the electrical panels
- Peek around outside for drainage issues
- Look for areas with peeling paint or warped siding
- Look for visible roof problems like warped or missing shingles
- Note any cosmetic fixes or possible cover-ups
Having an idea of any potential issues, even if you don’t understand the causes, can give you a sense of what you want your home inspector to pay extra attention to.
Attend the Professional Inspection
Some buyers don’t realize they can be at the inspection! A pro will expect you to be there, as they’ll want to explain any issues they see and ensure that you understand your options for tackling them. Follow our home inspection checklist to be sure you’re prepared for the big day.
Attending an inspection also gives you opportunities to ask questions, which can save you a great deal of time and money in the long run. Understanding complex issues with your electrical, plumbing, or HVAC system could mean the difference between an easy fix and an ongoing headache.
4. Take the Report Seriously
Sometimes, homeowners make the costly mistake of considering the inspection report as a formality. Home inspection isn’t just something that needs to happen in order to help a real estate sale come through; it’s something that you can use to protect your property and family for years to come.
With the report in hand, you’ll be better equipped to make decisions that save you time and money for years to come. From big questions like whether the property is right for you to smaller concerns about repairs, the right inspection report will provide all the information you need to move forward.
Save Time and Money on Your Home Inspection
When the time comes for your home inspection, follow the steps above to make sure that you’re working with a reputable company whose findings you understand. With expert help, you’ll have a better understanding of the home’s common issues as well as any significant defects.
If you’re ready to partner with the right team to save time and money, Class Home Inspection can help. Schedule your inspection today!