What if your new home was shaping up to be a living hell?
It sounds dramatic, but it happens every year to summertime home buyers. If you don’t know what to look for, then you’ll face a series of home emergencies during the hottest part of the year.
Fortunately, we’ve put together a home inspection checklist for buyers. Keep reading to learn how you can beat the heat!
Check the Air
The biggest worry for many summertime home buyers is that the air conditioning will malfunction. That’s why the AC should be the first thing on your home inspection checklist.
It’s easy enough to verify that the unit is working. But you also need to be on the lookout for subtler warning signs.
For example, does it look like the homeowner has left the unit fully covered during the winter? In that case, the unit may be rusted on the inside.
Does it look like any trees, bushes, or plants are very close to the unit? These are potential obstructions that may eventually cause damage to the air conditioning at a crucial time.
Inspect the Drain
Spring and summer usually bring a lot of rain. While this can be annoying, it gives you a perfect opportunity to check out the drainage situation.
First, inspect the gutters themselves. You’ll want to make sure they are physically in good condition and that they are transporting water from the home like they are supposed to do.
Be on the lookout for other important signs. If it has not rained lately and there is a soggy spot in the yard, that may be a sign that there is a drainage problem.
Remember that poor drainage can be a major issue. This may affect the overall quality of a home’s foundation.
Find the Foundation
The foundation is the next item on your home buyers inspection checklist. And there are multiple ways that you can subtly inspect the foundation’s condition.
Like we said before, try to monitor if poor drainage has led to wet soil in the yard or around the house. Such soil turning wet and rapidly hardening can play havoc with the foundation and may show in the form of visible cracks.
Inside the home, look out for things like sagging floors and warped ceilings. These are further clues that there may be damage to the foundation.
If the home has a basement, be sure to inspect it for cracks, warping, and other potential signs of a weakened foundation.
All Decked Out
A home with a deck is very enticing to a summertime home buyer. It’s easy to picture yourself grilling out or reading a book on a nice and spacious deck.
By quickly inspecting the deck, though, you can figure out if this house will be more trouble than it’s worth. For example, a deck that hasn’t been painted or stained in a while may be an indication that the owners did very little maintenance.
You’ll also want to make sure the deck has proper footing everywhere that is needed. Otherwise, those summertime showers we talked about can quickly sink your deck into the ground!
Finally, check for basic safety features like guardrails. This will keep you and your family safe long after the purchase.
Raise the Roof
The roof is one of the most important items on your home inspection checklist. It’s also one of the hardest places to inspect.
First, don’t be afraid to ask the existing owners when the roof was last replaced. Most roofs need to be replaced every two decades. If it’s older than this, you might be in danger.
Second, check out the shingles as soon as possible. If you see them flaking off very easily, it’s a sign that the roof is rotting and may need to be replaced sooner rather than later.
If the home has a basement, the foundation isn’t the only thing to worry about. You’ll want to make sure there is a system in place to handle the water.
Every basement faces water threats from two sources: surface water and groundwater. Left unchecked, this water can cause of lot of damage to your home after you make the purchase.
Ask the existing homeowners what measures protect the home from surface water. And you can inspect the outside of a home to see if there is any external protection such as French drains.
When inspecting a home for the first time, most people stop at simply viewing the walls. However, you’ll want to touch the walls whenever possible.
Yes, we said to touch the walls. The goal is to see if they feel any hotter than usual.
If an interior wall feels especially hot, this may be a sign that the home has poor insulation. And that means between summer and winter, you’ll probably have to do a lot of work to ensure the home is fully insulated.
Don’t forget to use this as a second opportunity to inspect for signs of a damaged foundation.
Get an Inspector
So far, we’ve gathered together many great ideas for your home inspection checklist. Here’s the last item: you need to hire an inspector!
First of all, the second set of eyes is a great way to make sure you don’t miss anything important about the house. You don’t want to discover any “dealbreakers” only after the deal is complete!
Second, many lenders will require the home to be officially inspected by a licensed professional. Going ahead and finding someone that you trust is a great way to speed this process up.
If you cannot find an inspector on your own, your real estate agent should be able to lend a hand.
Home Inspection Checklist for Buyers: The Bottom Line
Now you know more about making a home inspection checklist for buyers. But do you know where to find a good inspector?
At Class Home Inspection, we help you find a good inspector with the touch of a button. Why don’t you come and get started today?