If you’re on the hunt for property, you may be gearing up for a building inspection. In fact, 88% of home buyers get inspections! But do you know what to expect?
When you do, you can know what questions to ask — and what repairs you may need to make or request, depending on whether you’re buying or selling.
This article will walk you through the ins and outs of building inspections, from the integrity of plumbing to the exterior foundation, and more. Keep reading to find the ultimate guide to building inspections!
Understand the Value of a Building Inspection
While building inspections aren’t required to get a mortgage, they’re highly encouraged, as many issues aren’t visible to the untrained eye. After all, the last thing you want to do is start paying a lease or mortgage on a structure that’s in poor shape, and inspections can help you identify problems and negotiate repairs.
In some cases, a real estate agent will coordinate a building inspection. In other instances, a contractor may do this. For instance, a contractor may need to approve roof sheathing installation before moving forward on a project.
After an inspection, you should receive a detailed inspection report. Better yet, the inspector should schedule a time to go over it with you to make sure your building is up to code. If it’s a home inspection, they can help you prioritize problems you’ll need to tackle first.
Inspectors Will Check Plumbing and Electrical Work
Moving into an old building could mean you have galvanized steel or copper pipes. A good building inspector will check their condition. Be aware that old plumbing can be prone to more back-ups or rust.
Building inspectors also should assess the safety of your electrical system. The inspector will look at fuse boxes and circuit breakers to see if they meet building code regulations. Additionally, they’ll ensure that your system can handle expected electricity usage.
A Firm Foundation Impacts Building Safety
A home inspection will look at the foundation, too. This includes assessing the thickness, material, and age of the foundation. Bowed walls or cracked windows can indicate a need for repairs.
And are there signs of water problems in the basement? Discolored ceiling tiles or cracks in walls could mean problems. If you’re planning any basement remodeling, you don’t want to start installing carpet if the floors are likely to flood.
Building Inspections Will Examine the Exterior
During a home inspection, the inspector may not be able to access all parts of the roof. This is especially true if the roofline changes or has areas with a high pitch.
In those instances, they may rely on a visual assessment. This means they may only be able to report areas of missing or buckling shingles. But they won’t know about underlying leaks.
And building safety hinges on a sturdy frame. Building and pest inspections can help check for issues with termites and other critters.
For example, an inspector may notice sawdust or pinholes in walls. If so, they’ll check your building’s frame more closely. Termite damage can hurt the structural integrity!
A Building Inspection Ensures a Safer Investment
Building inspections are a critical step in the home buying or building process. They help ensure that all foundational work has been completed properly. And they give a homebuyer peace of mind!
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