Are you buying a Windsor house for sale and thinking about saving a few dollars and forgoing a home inspection? For all buyers, especially first time buyers, this is never a good idea. I have said over and over again, and most, if not all real estate experts agree, don’t buy a home without an impartial, professional home inspection. Is it worth saving a few hundred dollars if it is later discovered that your home has thousands of dollars of repairs that are needed? Unfortunately, in most cases, you would be responsible for the costs which may have been easily avoided with a simple home inspection.
As I have mentioned on this site many times, home buying can be a very emotional experience. This is especially true when a buyer finds a terrific home after weeks or months of searching. When it times come for a home inspection, buyers may decide to opt out for a variety of reasons:
1. They love the house so much, it doesn’t matter if there are a couple of things wrong with it.
2. They are buying a home from a family friend or relative and “they would never sell me a house that has anything wrong with it!”
3. They don’t feel it’s necessary to pay the inspection fee because money is tight and they would prefer to use it for other things.
4. They were involved in a bidding war and opted to waive a home inspection as part of the deal.
5. They were buying new construction and didn’t think it was necessary.
6. The sellers paid for a home inspection prior to listing their home, and it was in very good shape, according to their inspector.
Even the most experienced of buyers have decided not to get a home inspection because, “I’ve never had a problem before.”
But let me tell you why this is never a good idea. Getting an inspection, and writing in an inspection contingency, in which the buyer can opt out of a home if the inspection shows too many costly repairs, allows the buyers protection. It is an opportunity for buyers, once an inspection has been completed, to fix any defects, lower the home price or credit money at the closing to cover for the cost of repairs.
Take the case of a buyer who fell in love with a cute, storybook cottage style home in a popular neighbourhood. The home was everything she wanted and it had taken her several months of looking before she found this particular property. She did not care, nor did she want to get a home inspection as she had discovered the home had been gutted inside and recently remodeled. While it maintained the character of an older home, it was completely updated inside. However, after following the advice of her real estate agent, she reluctantly hired a home inspector to look over the house. Maybe you can guess what happened, but it was discovered that the foundation of her home was literally crumbling. At a cost of over $100,000, the home could be repaired. Obviously, the buyer was stunned and was grateful that she was out the few hundred dollars of a home inspection, as opposed to buying a home in which she simply could not afford to make the necessary repair. Needless to say, she didn’t buy the home.
I also advise buyers NOT to hire a family friend or relative that is a home inspector or someone who dabbles in construction but not a licensed professional. The two are not one in the same. And hiring that close friend can cause lots of sore feelings if that person misses a costly repair. Always hire someone who is highly recommended by your real estate agent or others in the field. From our experience, real estate agents will only suggest those professionals that are they best in their job. Inspectors know that they must be on the up and up if they want to continue to get referrals, so we trust those inspectors that have excellent reputations and have the highest of integrity to recommend them over and over again.
So whether you are buying new construction, or old, or whether the seller has already had an inspection or you want to save a few dollars, don’t ignore the home inspection. It truly can save you from making a huge financial mistake and can cause unlimited stress and back and forth with the seller should a major repair be needed. As a real estate agent, this is some of the best advice I can offer you as you prepare to buy your home.