Know Before You Buy: Get that home checked out before purchase
Published 5:11 pm Tuesday, April 19, 2022
April is Home Inspection Month, and the Louisiana State Board of Home Inspectors cautions homebuyers to have their home inspected before they buy, especially in such a difficult buyers’ market.
It’s critical for homebuyers to do everything they can to understand and protect their investment starting with a home inspection,” advised Morgan Spinosa, COO, LSBHI.
This important step in the homebuying process is to identify potential problems that may lead to expensive repairs or safety concerns. It is a visual examination of the major components of a home and its operating systems. The findings from a home inspection will assist the consumer in making a more informed buying decision based on an unbiased, expert perspective.
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“A home inspection is always important,” said Amanda Cox, Latter & Blum, “but especially here in southwest Louisiana where so many houses were damaged by the hurricanes and flooding. Some owners opted to do the repairs for themselves. Some may have been afraid to get in there and tear out everything that needed tearing out. It’s the lipstick on the pig analogy. It’s terrible, but it happens. A lot.”
Cox said home inspections have discovered rafter spread and incorrectly installed insulation, for example.
“The seller may be hesitant to make repairs that they know are needed for fear of opening up a Pandora’s box. So, the sellers are giving credits instead of making repairs. This is good for the buyer as it allows him or her to control the choice of vendor and quality of work,” Cox said.
Inspectors look at the heating system, central air conditioning, interior plumbing and electrical systems, roof and rain gutters, attic (including visible insulation), walls, ceilings, floors, windows and doors, foundation, basement, structural components.
To choose an inspector, make sure he is licensed and that the inspector is someone with whom the buyer can develop a good, trusting rapport. Start by asking friends, neighbors and family for recommendations. Ask real estate professionals. Ask people who have purchased or sold a home in the last couple of years. It is good to be present for the inspection and ask questions. Understand what an inspector will inspect and how.