|What is a home inspection?
A home inspection is an objective visual examination of the
physical structure and systems of a house, from the roof to
What does a home inspection include?
The standard home inspector’s report will cover the condition
of the home’s heating system; central air conditioning system
(temperature permitting); interior plumbing and electrical
systems; the roof, attic and visible insulation; walls,
ceilings, floors, windows and doors; the foundation, basement
and structural components.
The American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI) publishes a
Standards of Practice and Code of Ethics that outlines what
you should expect to be covered in your home inspection
Why do I need a home inspection?
Buying a home could be the largest single investment you will
ever make. To minimize unpleasant surprises and unexpected
difficulties, you’ll want to learn as much as you can about
the newly constructed or existing house before you buy it. A
home inspection may identify the need for major repairs or
builder oversights, as well as the need for maintenance to
keep it in good shape. After the inspection, you will know
more about the house, which will allow you to make decisions
If you already are a homeowner, a home inspection can identify
problems in the making and suggest preventive measures that
might help you avoid costly future repairs.
If you are planning to sell your home, a home inspection can
give you the opportunity to make repairs that will put the
house in better selling condition.
Why can't I do it myself?
Even the most experienced homeowner lacks the knowledge and
expertise of a professional home inspector. An inspector is
familiar with the elements of home construction, proper
installation, maintenance and home safety. He or she knows how
the home’s systems and components are intended to function
together, as well as why they fail.
Above all, most buyers find it difficult to remain completely
objective and unemotional about the house they really want,
and this may have an effect on their judgment. For accurate
information, it is best to obtain an impartial, third-party
opinion by a professional in the field of home inspection.
Can a house fail a home inspection?
No. A professional home inspection is an examination of the
current condition of a house. It is not an appraisal, which
determines market value. It is not a municipal inspection,
which verifies local code compliance. A home inspector,
therefore, will not pass or fail a house, but rather describe
its physical condition and indicate what components and
systems may need major repair or replacement.
When do I call a home inspector?
Typically, a home inspector is contacted immediately after the
contract or purchase agreement has been signed. Before you
sign, be sure there is an inspection clause in the sales
contract, making your final purchase obligation contingent on
the findings of a professional home inspection. This clause
should specify the terms and conditions to which both the
buyer and seller are obligated.
Do I have to be there?
While it’s not required that you be present for the
inspection, it is highly recommended. You will be able to
observe the inspector and ask questions as you learn about the
condition of the home and how to maintain it. However, in
these times of Covid 19 fears, you may elect to show up later,
after the inspector has finished his inspection of your home.
He can then make you familiar with his findings at that time
without unneeded exposure.
What if the report reveals problems?
No house is perfect. If the inspector identifies problems, it
doesn’t mean you should or shouldn’t buy the house, only that
you will know in advance what to expect. If your budget is
tight, or if you don’t want to become involved in future
repair work, this information will be important to you. If
major problems are found, a seller may agree to make repairs.
If the house proves to be in good condition, did I really need
Definitely. Now you can complete your home purchase with
confidence. You’ll have learned many things about your new
home from the inspector’s written report, and will have that
information for future reference.
Home Inspections of VA and
506 Mountain Rd, Front Royal, VA. 22630
Phone: (540) 631-5130
Fax: (540) 622-2916