What Home Inspections Buyers Should Consider
Dec 23, 2021
What Home Inspections Buyers Should Consider
Getting your future home inspected is an important step in the home buying process.
During a home inspection, an inspector does a visual analysis of a home to give professional advice about the condition of the home. A typical home inspection includes a look at heating and cooling systems, electrical systems, plumbing, structural components, the foundation, roof, attic, basement, crawl spaces, and other exterior and interior parts of the home.
Not every issue in a home is visible, though, which is why specialized home inspections should be considered. Other factors to consider when it comes to home inspections are when the home was built and what it includes, like if there's a pool. Home inspections are important to provide peace of mind today and to avoid surprises in the future.
About one in every 15 homes in the United States has an elevated radon level, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. When breathed in, radon increases the risk of lung cancer.
The EPA recommends testing your potential home for radon. Since radon can't be seen, smelled, or tasted, special equipment is needed to test for it. Plus, levels of radon can't be predicted based on the area. Just because a neighbor has low levels of radon doesn't mean your potential home will have low levels, too.
Radon testing should be done in the lowest level of the home that will be used as a living space.
It's in your best interest to get a pest inspection so necessary repairs can be made and preventative measures can be taken to keep out creatures like cockroaches, rodents, ants, termites and more.
During a pest inspection, a professional will look inside and outside of the home. Inspectors look for damage to the home that can be a sign of pests, like damaged floorboards. Inspectors also figure out what paths pests may use to enter the home or where they may be nearby. After a pest inspection, the inspector can give you the information you need going forward to handle or prevent pests.
If you can see mold yourself, you can skip an inspection - you don't need someone to tell you what you already know and can go ahead and move on to remediation and prevention. However, even if you don't see mold, a mold inspection is still a good idea since an inspector can locate hard-to-find mold growth.
Mold can impact your health and lead to coughing, wheezing, itchy eyes, and other health issues.
Mold is common in places where there has been moisture, so getting a mold inspection is an especially good idea in a house where you know there has previously been flooding or other significant water damage. Mold inspections are also a good idea for homes located near a lake or river.
LEAD-BASED PAINT INSPECTION
Lead is very toxic and can lead to behavioral problems and serious health issues, including damage to the brain and vital organs. Homes built before 1978 are more likely to contain lead-based paint, since that was the year the federal government banned the use of the paint across the United States, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Homes built before 1940 are most likely to contain lead paint, though nearly one fourth of homes built between 1960-1977 also contain it, according to the EPA.
While home sellers must tell you any information they know about lead-based paint in the home if it was built before 1978, if a test hasn't been done, they may not have that information in the first place.
Lead paint is especially harmful to the development of children 6 years old and younger, so getting a lead-based paint inspection is a good idea if you have children.The impact of lead paint is also more consequential for pregnant women. A lead-based paint inspection is also a good idea if you plan to renovate a home, a situation where someone could come in contact with lead-based paint.
Asbestos, a mineral made up of fibers, was used in many building materials, such as insulation, until the 1970s. Like lead-based paint, it is not used in products made now.
Asbestos being in a home isn't a problem on its own if the material containing it isn't disturbed, but getting an inspection is a good idea if you plan to renovate the home. Asbestos fibers can be released into the air if materials that contain asbestos are damaged or deteriorated. Breathing in the fibers leads to health problems including an increased risk of lung cancer. In some cases, it can be fatal.
Asbestos is not easy to detect - you won't know just by looking at a material whether it contains asbestos. During an inspection, a sample of materials is taken for testing to know if asbestos is present and needs to be removed.
POOL, HOT TUB, AND SPA INSPECTIONS
When buying a home with a pool, hot sub, or spa, it's important to know if repairs will be needed and if safety requirements are being met. That's where an inspection comes in. Inspectors check out the safety of the pool, hot tub, or spa, and can let you know if the structure and materials are in solid condition.
There are lots of parts inside and outside of a pool that keep it functional, like electric and plumbing lines. An inspector can check for chipping tile or liner, if the pool has one, and will look at the equipment like a filter, pump, and heater, if they are there.
ORIZON CAN HELP
Are you ready for your new home to be inspected? When you buy with Orizon, we handle inspection timelines and responses and are there to answer all your questions. Call us at 260-248-8961 to get connected with an Orizon Real Estate agent today.