|Giving You Knowledge & Power To Buy And Sell Real Estate.
|21 Point Home Inspection Report Checklist
For Buying Or Selling Real Estate
By Noel Peebles
Perhaps the two questions asked most often are, "why bother getting a Report?" and "will a Home Inspection
Report identify problems?"
Well, the questions really go hand in hand. Yes, a Home Inspection Report can be a valuable tool when buying or
selling a house and, yes, the Home Inspection Report will (in many cases) expose some problems.
When done professionally, a home inspection will be extremely thorough and, will most likely identify some
problems (or potential problems). Most problems will be minor in nature and can be repaired after closing. Even
newly constructed homes will have problems noted on a home inspection report.
However, the home inspection report will sometimes identify major, expensive to rectify problems. When this
happens the buyer and the seller will often negotiate a solution before closing. If major problems are found, the
buyer may insist on paying a lower purchase price, or possibily to change the contract terms. It really depends
on the situation, the nature of the problem(s) and the terms and conditions in the contract.
That is why, before signing any contract, it pays to seek proper legal advice. You need to protect yourself in the
likelihood of a home inspection report identifying problems.
When selling a home it pays to fix minor problems before putting the property on the market. Major problems also
need careful consideration and you will need to determine what is involved in rectifying the problem(s). What will
the costs be, the disruption factor and whether the problem(s) will affect the sale or the sale price.
A home inspection report can have a big part to play in any real estate transaction. It could impact on mortgage
financing, delay the sale, lose you the sale, or affect your final selling price or terms of sale.
Can The Home Inspection Report Be Relied On?
Home inspection reports can vary in quality (thoroughness) and what is included. Although the home inspector
will have a list of guidelines to follow, the home inspection report will only be as good as the person writing it. So,
if the home inspector fails to notice problems they won't show on the report.
The most common type of home inspection report will include an overall home inspection, which evaluates the
home's structural and mechanical condition, and a pest inspection and moisture damage inspection. Aspects of
the report may require further investigation by a specialized professional (e.g., a roofer, plumber or pest
Here are 21 points that could be touched on in a home inspection report (you may have other things to add to
1. Doors and Windows
The home inspector will be able to report on the age and condition of doors and windows and have a guess at
whether they are the originals installed when the house was built.
The home inspection report should highlight problems with paint or caulking, dry rot on panes, sills and frames.
The home inspector might randomly check that the windows and doors open properly and that windows seal
The home inspection report will include details of the flooring. It may mention: the general condition, signs of
uneven levels, water staining, water damage around plumbing fixtures, or other damage like cracked ceramics.
The home inspector will usually test for soft spots in the floor and under the house for water damaged
floorboards and supports.
3. Walls and Ceiling
The home inspector will look to see if the walls are level, check for any drywall seams or nails showing, look for
cracks or loose plaster, stains, physical damage or signs of earlier repairs. The ceilings will be viewed for signs
of leaks and cracks in the plaster.
The exterior walls will be checked too. The home inspection report will likely mention problems like: bowed or
leaning walls, missing mortar, loose, missing or rotten siding, deteriorating paintwork and flaking or cracking
21 Point Home Inspection Checklist Continues - click here