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Posted by St. Martin Team on 2/11/2021

Life of Pix via Pexels

If your lender does not demand it, skipping the home inspection might be fairly tempting as you move toward closing on the house of your dreams. Although moving full steam ahead might provide what you need in the moment, that decision could end up causing problems in the future. So, even though it will take a little bit extra time, here’s why you should always have an inspection performed before you commit to buying a home.

Puts the Spotlight on Safety Issues

Home inspectors go through the entire property with a fine tooth comb, looking for safety issues and other faults. As they go, they check off all the issues, so they can create a detailed report at the end of their visit.

Depending on what they find, they might note:

  • Mold and mildew
  • High radon levels in the soil
  • Defective electrical equipment
  • Failing roofing materials
  • Missing smoke detectors
  • Lead paint
  • Asbestos materials

With that information, you will know just what needs to be fixed before you move in, helping keep everyone in your household safe from harm.

Verifies All Work is Permitted & to Code

While inspecting the home, your inspector will verify all work is completed to code and under the right permits. They will compare the structure’s characteristics to the building blueprints and other documents to make sure all is well. Their efforts will help prevent problems in the future when you go to have the residence remodeled or even put it back on the market.

Allows for Easier Negotiations

If the inspection reveals any problems that might be a dealbreaker for you, the report can be used to negotiate with the seller. Your real estate agent can help in negotiating a price break or even to have repairs performed before closing. Then, you can have another inspection performed to verify the safety hazards or other issues are rectified before completing the purchase.

Supports Your Future Budgeting Needs

Even if you do not find any major issues with the home, you can still use the inspection report to your advantage. As you review the notes, watch for any developing issues that might require maintenance or repairs in the near future. Then, use that information to save up money for the work and complete it before the problems escalate. With that approach, you are less likely to be caught by surprise by leaks, appliance failure, or any other issues that could come your way.

Even though it might push back your closing date by a bit, you are not likely to regret having a home inspection performed. The report will provide invaluable information that allows you to move forward with confidence you are making the right purchase decision.




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Posted by St. Martin Team on 4/9/2020

Image by Shahid Abdullah from Pixabay

A home inspection is a service that’s usually paid for by the buyer in a real estate transaction, and you have the option to forgo this when you’re purchasing a house. In almost every situation, however, real estate agents recommend getting a  home inspection. Here’s why an inspection is so important.

What is a Home Inspection?

A home inspection is essentially an audit of a home’s structure and vital systems, and the audit is performed by a home inspector. Home inspectors are independent parties, which allows them to provide objective assessments, and they specialize in this particular service. Home inspectors have a broad knowledge about foundations, structural integrity, HVAC systems, plumbing systems and much more.

A basic home inspection generally includes an assessment of the house’s structure and essential systems. Some inspections will also check for mold, pests, lead paint and other potential issues.

How Much Does a Home Inspection Cost?

The cost of a home inspection is usually based on the size of a home and what exactly an inspector is looking for. An inspection that checks for mold and pests will typically cost more than only a basic inspection that looks at structural integrity and essential systems. Even among basic inspections, there are sometimes varying levels that cover different systems at different costs.

Despite the variance in price, however, home inspections tend to be quite affordable. Most inspections cost a few hundred dollars for a fairly common single-family house.

What Do You Do With Results from a Home Inspection?

After a home inspection is complete, the inspector will furnish a report that details their findings. Few homes are absolutely perfect, and there are normally at least a few issues noted on an inspection report. Depending on what the real estate market is like and what’s noted on a report, there are a few ways you might use this information.

First, the report at least tells you what issues the house has so that you can make sure you want to purchase the property. Second, you can also use the report to prioritize projects once you own the building. Finally, sometimes items in a report can be used to negotiate the sale price lower.




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Posted by St. Martin Team on 3/12/2020

Photo by LesPalenik via Shutterstock

Many first time home buyers simply donít think too much about home maintenance during the purchasing process. The challenge is that once youíre in the home, regardless of whether youíve thought about it or not, your homeís maintenance needs only increase. And if thereís a hidden problem lurking somewhere, the result of ignoring it means it only gets bigger, more difficult to repair and could potentially cause other issues.

Invite an Inspection

During the purchase process, you should have had a home inspection. On it, a certified inspector lists any areas with potential maintenance needs in the foreseeable future. Read through the inspection list to see whatís upcoming. Will you need a new roof in a few years? Does the exterior paint need some TLC? How old is the water heater and how long is the warranty on it? Did the inspector notice any weaknesses in the foundation or cracks in the supports? Minor issues likely werenít enough to stop a sale since every home has some blemishes. But knowing the potential issues means you can keep your eye on them and stop something from developing into an expensive issue needing major repairs.

Do an Annual Review

Make a list and check it twice. Each season walk through your home, crawl in the attic space and under the floor joists to check things out. Look for evidence of water leaks, mold, or build-up of condensation. Check for dripping faucets, hissing or running toilets or loose fixtures. Tighten water valves and check for moisture inside sink cabinets and bathroom vanities.

If your house has a fireplace, have the chimney swept before you use it in the fall or winter. During the summer, birds and small animals often build nests in the chimney that can catch embers and cause house fires. If your chimney does not have a screen or cap, talk to your fireplace professional about installing them. Your fireplace isnít the only thing that needs screens. If your gutters continually clog with leaves and debris, they can back up and cause significant water damage to your home. In areas with snow or ice, clogged gutters can overflow during a melt and damage the gutters, soffit and even the foundation. A gutter contractor can install screens that let the water in but keep the debris out.

Energy Review

Other areas that need consideration are windows and doors. If your dual-paned window steams or frosts on the inside, the seal has broken, so you wonít reap the benefit of energy savings. Drafty door jams and frames allow frigid air in and cause your furnace to run longer. Ask your public utility company to do an energy survey of your home and caulk, repair or replace when necessary.

Your professional real estate agent is the best resource for a home inspector, referrals for a handy contractor and how to contact your public utilities for a review. Reach out today for information. 




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