The First Time Home Buyer Checklist

While it is important to get hire a professional home inspector, here are some things…

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Hello there! I’m Brian Adams, the owner of OC Home Inspect. As a professional home inspector, I understand the importance of inspection day during the home buying process. It’s an exciting and crucial moment, as it offers you the opportunity to assess the condition of the property before finalizing the deal. Home inspections provide you with valuable insights and ensure you’re fully aware of what you’re getting into. At OC Home Inspect, we’re here to guide you through this essential step and provide you with a comprehensive inspection report.

Choosing the Right Inspector

Selecting a licensed and professional home inspector is vital to ensure a thorough inspection. Here are some tips for choosing the right inspector:

  1. Seek Recommendations: Ask for recommendations from your real estate agent or trusted individuals. You can also use online platforms like Zillow to find inspectors with reviews and ratings.
  2. Check Credentials: Verify their license and certifications. At OC Home Inspect, our team holds the Certified Professional Inspector designation.
  3. Sample Reports: Request sample reports from potential inspectors to assess the level of detail and thoroughness.
  4. Coverage and Additional Services: Clarify what is included in the inspection cost. Will they test for lead paint or asbestos? Ensure you have a clear understanding of the scope of the inspection.

The Importance of Being Present

It is highly recommended that you are present during the home inspection. Here’s why:

  1. Comprehensive Understanding: Being there allows you to follow along and gain firsthand knowledge about your home’s systems and maintenance requirements.
  2. Clarifying Queries: You can ask questions and seek explanations from the inspector to address any concerns or areas of interest.
  3. Visual Inspection: While you don’t need to accompany the inspector into confined spaces, you should explore accessible areas of the home to better understand its condition.
  4. Collaboration: Your real estate agent should also be present to assist and ensure a smooth inspection process.

Home Inspection Checklist

To make the most of your professional inspection, consider the following checklist:

  • Foundation: Look for cracks or shifts in the walls and ceilings inside and outside the house.
  • Lot: Check the drainage and identify any areas with excessive dampness.
  • Roof: Assess the overall condition and inquire about the last replacement or repairs.
  • Exterior: Examine the house’s exterior for signs of necessary repairs, loose components, and potential asbestos in the materials.
  • Attic: Inspect the interior of the roof structure for any signs of leaks or water damage.
  • Interior Evidence: Check ceilings and windows in each room for any signs of leaks or damage.
  • Basement: Evaluate for moisture issues and ensure proper insulation.
  • Electrical: Test switches and outlets, inquire about grounding, and assess the electrical panel.
  • Plumbing: Look for any unusual noises or malfunctions, and consider having the sewer line inspected.
  • Appliances: Note the age and condition of included appliances, such as stoves, dishwashers, and refrigerators.
  • Heating/Cooling System: Verify its functionality and inquire about the system’s age and maintenance history.
  • Odors: Be mindful of any persistent odors that may indicate potential issues, particularly in basements.

Full Disclosure and Beyond

Obtain the seller’s disclosure statement before the inspection. This document helps you identify any specific areas of concern or recent repairs made by the seller. Pay attention to unpermitted work, which may require additional attention or code compliance if you plan on future renovations.

The Inspector’s Role and Limitations

It’s essential to understand that while home inspectors are thorough professionals, they have limitations. They can only assess visible aspects of the property. Hidden issues may emerge after you move in. Review your contract to determine the inspector’s liability and the extent of their responsibility. Communication and legal advice may be necessary in case significant undisclosed issues arise.

Embrace Homeownership

Remember, homeownership comes with its joys and challenges. A leaky faucet may be a minor inconvenience, but major failures may require further action. Stay proactive in maintaining your home and addressing any issues that arise.

At OC Home Inspect, we’re committed to providing you with a comprehensive inspection and ensuring you make informed decisions. Reach out to us today to schedule your professional home inspection. Let us be your trusted partner in your home buying journey.