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With housing prices rising throughout the country, many Americans are choosing to buy condominiums instead of single-family homes.

Not only do condos cost less than single-family homes, but some research also shows that they appreciate in value more quickly.

If you’re looking to buy a condo and take advantage of these perks, you’ll likely need to have it inspected before the sale can go through. 

Here is a condo inspection checklist that lays out everything you can expect from the inspection process.

What Happens During a Condo Inspection?

During a condo inspection, a certified home inspector will walk through the condo and look for any current or potential issues.

Condo inspections are purely visual. The inspector will never open up the walls or lift up the floors while they’re looking through the property. 

Condo Inspections vs. Home Inspections

The main difference between a condo inspection and a home inspection is the amount of time the inspector spends looking at the building systems (electricity, plumbing, heating, cooling, etc.).

During a home inspection, an inspector will check every single building system because the owner is responsible for all of them.

During a condo inspection, the inspector won’t spend quite as much time on these aspects since they’re shared by everyone who lives in the building.

They also may not be readily accessible, or they may be more complex than building systems in a single-family home.

Benefits of a Condo Inspection

There are lots of reasons why you ought to have a condo inspected before you buy or sell it. Some of the greatest benefits of a professional inspection include:

Save Money

Many buyers consider skipping the condo or home inspection to try and save money. In reality, though, you might end up spending more money if you don’t pay for the inspection up front.

If you purchase a condo and find out later that it needs serious and expensive repairs, you’ll likely be out a lot more than you would be if you’d just paid for the inspection in the first place.

Anticipate Future Costs

A condo inspection also allows you to anticipate future repair costs.

Maybe everything is in good working order now, but the inspector might point out some things that might need repairing later on.

Once you know about these issues, you can make sure you have the funds set aside to pay for them when the time comes.

Peace of Mind

Paying for a condo inspection also gives you peace of mind.

Buying a condo can be intimidating, especially if you’ve never owned property before.

When you pay to have the condo inspected up front, you’ll be able to rest easy knowing that it’s in good shape and is a good investment.

Condo Inspection Checklist

Okay, you can see that it’s a good idea to pay for a condo inspection before your purchase is complete. What actually happens during a condo inspection, though?

The following checklist lays out what you can expect from a typical condo inspection:

How Long Does it Take?

Condo inspections usually only take between one and three hours to compete. The specific length of the inspection will vary depending on the size of the condo, though.

The inspection agency will work with you to find a time that works best for everyone to come and inspect the condo.

Can You be Present? 

You are welcome to be present and ask questions during the condo inspection. It’s not required that you be there, but you’re absolutely allowed.

Many buyers like to be present during the inspection to see for themselves that everything with the condo is in order. It also gives them additional peace of mind.

The Big Stuff

During the inspection, the inspector will start with the biggest parts of the condo. This might include the roof, the building systems, and the windows. 

The inspector likely will not climb on top of the roof. They may step back from the property and use a monocular or a special camera to look at it, though.

They’ll also assess the functionality and take pictures of things like the air conditioner, furnace, electrical system, plumbing system, and water tank.

Inspectors will check the windows to see how energy efficient they are, too.

They might also check the floors to make sure they’re level. While looking at the floors, the inspector may look at the carpets or tiles to make sure there aren’t any signs of mold, water damage, gaps, or missing caulking.

The Small Stuff

Once they’ve inspected the major aspects of the condo, the inspector will move on to the smaller, yet still important, parts.

They might use special tools to identify leaky pipes or overheating electrical systems. They may check for odd smells or other indicators of mold or mildew. 

Inspectors also will look at the balconies and railings to make sure everything is sturdy and well-built.

The inspector will likely take a look at things like the kitchen appliances, as well as the kitchen and bathroom countertops.

The End of the Inspection

When the condo inspection is over, the inspector will put together a detailed report.

Once you receive the report (they usually are turned over very quickly), you can sit down with your realtor and decide whether or not you want to proceed with the purchase.

If there are issues with the condo that will cost a lot of money to fix, you might want to renegotiate with the seller to get a better price or have the repairs taken care of before you agree to the purchase.

Schedule a Condo Inspection Today

The idea of having your future condo inspected can be a bit nerve-wracking, and you might be tempted to skip it to try and wrap the sale up sooner.

It’s important to get an inspection done, though, to make sure that everything is in good working order.

Keep this condo inspection checklist in mind so you know what to expect and won’t have to deal with any surprises later on.

If you’re ready to schedule a condo inspection for your Northeast Ohio condo, we can help at Class Home Inspection.

Contact us today to schedule an appointment. We’ll get back to you right away to confirm your inspection.