The Seller's Guide to Home Property Inspections

The Seller's Guide to Home Property Inspections

The East End of Houston, Texas, is bustling with exciting urban life. Stroll through streets adorned with eye-catching murals and urban art and explore lively galleries and dynamic performance venues that fuel this community's creative spark!

This thriving community is a unique blend of historic charm and modern amenities. The diverse culinary scene provides a gateway to exploring global flavors while sampling dishes from an array of locally owned eateries. Whether attending concerts in the lush parks or participating in colorful cultural events, living in the the East End provides an unbeatable experience filled with character and connection.

One key step towards getting top dollar for your East End home for sale is to enlist the help of a professional home inspector. By understanding your property's strengths and potential pitfalls, you enhance your negotiating power and demonstrate an unwavering commitment to transparency and quality — traits savvy buyers value as much as the dream kitchen.

Is a home inspection required?

While home inspections are not mandatory when selling a home, they play a significant role in the home buying and selling process. In fact, most potential buyers will opt for a home and property inspection to ensure that the property is in good condition and to avoid any surprises after the purchase. Consequently, it is wise for sellers to address potential issues before putting their homes on the market to avoid unnecessary delays.

By proactively conducting repairs, improvements, and doing a pre-listing inspection, sellers gain an advantage in negotiations by demonstrating goodwill and transparency, which makes the property more attractive to prospective buyers and expedites the sale. Fixing any issues ahead of time may prevent delays in closing or cause a deal to fall through due to concerns raised during a buyer's inspection.

What is included in a home inspection?

The home inspection provides a detailed examination that identifies any potential issues, ensures the home's safety, and protects your investment. During a home inspection, the inspector will meticulously evaluate the home's interior and exterior areas.

Key components such as the foundation, roof, walls, windows, doors, plumbing system, electrical system, heating and cooling systems, and insulation are closely scrutinized. Attention is also given to identifying signs of water damage, mold growth, pest infestations, structural concerns, and other potential hazards that could impact the home's value or habitability.

In addition to these structural and functional aspects, the home inspector will assess safety features like smoke detectors and railings. They may also provide helpful maintenance tips or suggest preventative measures for potential issues.

What isn't included in my home inspection?

Some homes require additional specialized inspections, such as the termite or wood-destroying organism (WDO) inspection. This in-depth evaluation seeks to identify signs of termite infestations, damage, and any conditions conducive to their existence. Another essential inspection is the radon test, which measures levels of radon gas, a naturally occurring radioactive substance known to cause lung cancer if left undetected. A mold inspection, especially helpful in damp or humid climates, detects potentially harmful mold growths within the home's structure.

Other notable specialized assessments include structural engineering inspections for investigating foundation integrity and potential problems with load-bearing walls or other structural elements. Asbestos and lead testing are crucial for homes built before 1980 when these hazardous materials were more commonly used in construction. Homes with pools require an expert to look for leaks or faulty equipment.

What should you look for in your home inspection?

To read a home inspection report effectively:

  • Start by focusing on the summary provided by the inspector, which will generally highlight significant issues that require immediate attention.

  • As you read through the entire report, pay close attention to critical areas such as the foundation, roof, electrical system, plumbing, and HVAC systems.

  • Look for any comments about potential safety hazards or costly repairs and prioritize addressing these issues.

  • In addition to reported problems, keep an eye out for suggestions on maintaining or improving the property over time.

Do inspections always find issues?

When reviewing the inspection findings, it's essential to understand that no home is perfect – some wear and tear are to be expected. It's up to you to determine which issues can be easily resolved and can increase the value of your home if you fix them. Consult with your real estate agent or consider seeking opinions from specialized professionals like structural engineers, electricians, or plumbers regarding specific items on the report. This approach will enable you to make informed decisions.

Do I have to do anything to prepare for a home inspection?

If you already know of any issues that may be present in your home, address them before the inspection. Especially if you plan to share the report with prospective buyers, you don't want a long list of issues on the report, so get the easy repairs out of the way first.

Next, focus on decluttering and cleaning your home from top to bottom to create an inviting atmosphere for potential buyers and ensure inspectors have easy access to areas needing attention. Remove any unnecessary items from the basement, attic, or garage, and ensure all spaces are free of dirt and dust. Don't forget about the exterior - tidy up landscaping, trim overgrown vegetation around walkways and windows, and thoroughly clean your home's façade.

How do I find a home inspector?

When seeking a home inspector, choosing a licensed and certified one will give you the utmost confidence in their ability to assess your potential home. You can request referrals from friends, family, or real estate agents. While recommendations can be helpful, always conduct a thorough research by reading online reviews and checking the professional's credentials.

A licensed home inspector has met the local state or provincial requirements regarding education, experience, and examination performance. Certification from reputable organizations like the American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI) or the International Association of Certified Home Inspectors (InterNACHI) signifies adherence to industry standards and a commitment to ongoing education. By choosing a home inspector who is licensed and certified, you can trust that they possess the skills and knowledge necessary to perform an accurate and comprehensive evaluation of your home.

How can a real estate agent help?

At Eastwood Realty, working with our real estate agents goes beyond the ordinary – and that's because we were founded by dedicated athletes who know the true meaning of preparation, hard work, and enjoyment. Our team brings the same dedication and energy from athletic endeavors to real estate, ensuring a highly efficient and engaging experience for our clients. Partnering with Eastwood Realty means having an unstoppable team to help navigate the ever-changing housing market while enjoying the journey.

*Header photo courtesy of Shutterstock

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