Every well-informed homebuyer knows that a certified home inspector is truly their first line of defense to avoid investing on bad properties. Further, you might have read many articles on the internet telling you that “your presence during inspection” and “asking questions” are what you need to do to get the most out of the home inspection. We would agree. The more communication and understanding of the process and the subsequent findings, the more confident you will be in your decision making process.
That being said, most homebuyers are not experts in the field, and might find it difficult to know what questions would be important to ask while walking the home and property. Here is a short list that should simplify the process for you.
Question 1: Is there any sign of renovation or repair?
Knowing if there were any prior repairs or renovation work that was completed could have the potential of either costing or saving you money in the future. Finding out if an addition was given a permit by the town or city is important. You could experience tax issues are assessment challenges if things were not done properly. Most home buyers will not be able to identify work done and it takes a trained eye of a good inspector to find these signs.
Question 2: Ask if there is any disclosure about the property
The seller should have told you about this if there is any but if not told, your duty is to ask. This is one of the reasons why it’s advisable to be present during the inspection – to be able to see if there is any major structural defect. However, always be on the lookout issues like sloping floors, damp smells, sagging ceilings, mold etc. Each one of these could eat away at savings. Again, the more open communication before you commit the better.
Question 3: Ask about any challenges the neighborhood has experienced
The neighbors can be great resources to you. They know everything that goes on and might be open to sharing if you simply ask. If there was a flooding issue because a drainage system backed up, it could damage your yard or home. If there are frequent power outages, it could cause damage to your electrical system or appliances in your home.
Yes, these are simple and common sense but sometimes, in the hustle and bustle of the process, often overlooked. The goal is to slow down and do you homework. Ask questions. Find an Albany home inspector that is affordable, someone you can trust and who will do a thorough job.