Home Inspections - Home Inspection
Checklist - Property Inspections - Property Inspection Checklist - Real Estate
Inspections - Real Estate Inspection Checklist
Purchasing a home
is one of the most important investments you will make, so you need to ensure
that the home you're interested in is in a condition you are comfortable with.
Home inspections use a trained expert to evaluate a home's condition. During the
the qualified inspector makes an in-depth, fair look at the
property you're considering purchasing.
Evaluate the physical
condition: the structure, construction and mechanical systems.
Find and list items
that should be repaired or replaced.
Estimate the remaining
useful life of major systems (such as electrical, plumbing, heating, air
conditioning), equipment, structure and finishes.
The home inspector
does not estimate the value of the house.
Inspection Checklist Items:
Elements: Construction of walls, ceilings, floors, roof and
Evaluation: Wall covering, landscaping, grading, elevation, drainage,
driveways, fences, sidewalks, fascia, trim, doors, windows, lights and
Attic: Framing, ventilation, type of roof construction, flashing and
gutters. It does not include a guarantee of roof condition nor a roof
Plumbing: Identification of
pipe materials used for potable, drain, waste and vent pipes. including
condition. Toilets, showers, sinks, faucets and traps.
It does not include a
Components: Water heaters, furnaces, air conditioning, duct work,
chimney, fireplace and sprinklers.
Electrical: Main panel,
circuit breakers, types of wiring, grounding, exhaust fans, receptacles, ceiling
fans and light fixtures.
range and oven, built-in microwaves, garbage disposal and, yes, even smoke
Garage: Slab, walls,
ceiling, vents, entry, firewall, garage door, openers, lights, receptacles,
exterior, windows and roof.
Should I get Earthquake Insurance?
Remember, home inspection
reports do not necessarliy describe the condition of every component if they're
in excellent shape, but the report should note items that are defective or in
need of maintanence.
Health and safety
Moisture and drainage
Roofs of a short life
Furnace and A/C
After the inspection is
completed, you should expect a written report of the home inspector's
investigation within a few days.
Remember, a home inspection
is NOT a home appraisal. A property or home appraisal provides an estimate of a
property's market value. Lenders require an appraisal of a home prior to
approving a loan on the home because Lenders do not want to loan more than the
worth of the home.
Home Appraisals benefit Lenders, Home Inspections benefit
Note: The Federal Housing
Authority (FHA) requires a lender to obtain appraisals of homes and properties
backing FHA-insured loans. The FHA requires appraisals for three
To estimate the market
value of your Montana property.
To ensure that a
property meets FHA minimum property requirements and standards (health and
To ensure that Montana
properties can easily be resold.
The appraisal will note
problems that are readily apparent with the property and non-compliance with
HUD's minimum property requirements and standards. These problems may not be the
same as those items noted in a home inspection report.
The FHA does not
guarantee the value or condition of the home you are interested in purchasing,
and the FHA does not do home inspections. If you find problems with your new
home after closing, the FHA can neither lend or give you money for any repairs
nor can the FHA buy back the home from you. The FHA cannot help you with the
seller or original builder or subcontractors involved in the home's
That's why it is so
important for you, the buyer, to ensure an independent home inspection is done.
Request a qualified home inspector to thoroughly examine the physical condition
of the home you're interested in and supply you the information needed to make a
When you write an offer
on a home, you should insist that the contract state the offer is contingent
(dependent) on a home inspection by a qualified inspector. You will have to pay
for the inspection, but an inspection could very well deter you from buying a
home that may cost you far more in future repairs. If you are satisfied with the
home inspection, you can proceed with your offer.
As the buyer, it is
your responsibility to carefully select your qualified home
inspector. The following sources may help you find a qualified home
regulatory authorities: some states require home inspectors to be
Your Realtor: most real estate
professionals have a list of home inspectors they recommend to clients.
organizations: Professional organizations may require home inspectors
to pass tests and meet minimum qualifications for membership.
Phone book or
Internet: Look under "Building Inspection Services" or "Home Inspection
testing: Radon is a natural occuring radioactive gas found in many
homes across the country. Strong concentrations (amounts) can cause serious
problems. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S.
Surgeon General recommends all homes be tested for radon. For more information
testing, call the National Radon Information Line at
1-800-SOS-Radon (1-800-767-7236). As with a home inspection, if you decide to
test for radon, you can doit before or after signing a contract, as long as your
contract states your purchase depends on (is contingent upon) your satisfaction
with the radon test results.
Issues: Many homes built before 1978 have lead paint, and some
ingredients can threaten your health. To protect your family, you should be sure
to get a lead-based inspection and/or risk assessment. For more information,
contact the National Lead Information Clearinghouse at 1-800-424-LEAD
conclusion, inspections are prudent investments in your future
Purchasing Your Home, File a
giving you the
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