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5 Things to Consider for a Pre-Home Inspection

November 15, 2019

Buying a new home in Seattle is an exciting time for many people. However, it’s far too easy to get caught up in the moment and forget to perform the necessary due diligence. A professional home inspection is an integral part of the home buying process that many people sometimes neglect.

It can help uncover potential hidden issues such as a damaged foundation, defective plumbing, or a leaky roof that would otherwise go unnoticed by the untrained eye. Here are five great reasons as to why any prospective Seattle homebuyer should get a home inspection before signing the contract:

Don’t Be Fooled by Curb Appeal

More and more Seattle home sellers are opting to “stage” their homes. This involves hiring a professional design company to come in and put furniture, artwork, and other attractive accoutrements in and around the house. The intention of this is to give the new home buyer an idea of what life could be like if they were to live there.

The problem with beautiful-looking homes is that they sometimes give buyers a false sense of security. Just because it looks new, doesn’t mean there’s nothing wrong with it. While a home inspection on a newer-looking house may seem like a waste of money, there’s no telling what lies just underneath the surface. 

Negotiation Power

One of the biggest reasons you should get a home inspection is that it will give you leverage when it comes time to negotiate the price of the home. For example, if the house you’re interested in is just outside of your price range, the data gathered during the home inspection can help you negotiate it down to where you can afford it.

Fixing a roof, foundation, or changing out the electrical systems can cost tens of thousands of dollars. Even if there’s no damage currently, it’s only a matter of time before something breaks, and you’re stuck with a potentially expensive bill.   

Specialized Inspections 

Some professional home inspectors will only inspect a portion of the home. They might not have the expertise to check out the HVAC or other systems thoroughly. In this case, it pays to spend a little extra money to help ensure that the a/c and heating systems are working as intended—as repairs can get very costly.

Radon, asbestos, termites, and even geology are other specialized inspections that you should take into consideration. Some of these tests are more expensive than others, but they can save you thousands of dollars and potential health issues later on down the road.

Be sure to ask your primary home inspector precisely what he or she will—and won’t—inspect. Don’t automatically assume that a home inspection will cover all aspects of potential damage.

Maintenance Headaches

A new home inspection can help uncover potential routine maintenance headaches. Even though everything may be in perfect operating order now, things can and will break down in the future. Some home inspectors will provide potential buyers with a cost of deferred maintenance.

It will show a list of things that will most likely need to be repaired or replaced within the next five years. This will not only help with price negotiations but allow buyers to budget accordingly if they choose to buy the house.

Confidence in Your Purchase

Most importantly, a pre-purchase home inspection will give buyers peace of mind. You’ll fully understand the current condition of the home and won’t have to worry about “what if” something goes wrong later down the road. While the initial cost may run in the few hundreds of dollars, it can help save you time, money, and headaches in the future.

Many home inspectors will allow you to join them when they are looking over the home. It’s wise to tag along and take notes as well as ask any questions that you may have. For example, if the inspector finds shingle damage, you may have the option to lay another layer over the current one—versus having to pay more money to completely re-roof the home.

Home Buying Help in Seattle

My name is Scott Haveson, and I’m a Seattle Realtor. I have helped countless people find the home of their dreams, no matter how big or small. If you have any questions about pre-purchase home inspections or the buying process, give me a call at (206) 953-8311 or email me.  I'll work hard to help you find the right home for you or your family.

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Scott is more than just a realtor: in the short time that I have known him he has become a trusted advisor and friend.  I first had the pleasure of working with Scott when I decided to sell my property on the East side.  He went well beyond what I came to expect from other brokers and helped me in every aspect of getting my house ready for sale.  He also gathered the most up-to-date market intelligence so that we could set the right offering price.  Once the sale was done, Scott gave me the education I needed to purchase my new home in Seattle with confidence.  Throughout the process he provided personalized service and had a team of specialists on standby to assist in every aspect of the transaction.  If you’ve spent any time looking at real estate in Seattle recently, you know that every advantage counts.  In today’s competitive market, you need a person like Scott on your side. ~ Mark M.

Buying or selling your perfect Seattle home?

shaveson@windermere.com • (206) 953-8311
214 W McGraw St. Seattle, WA 98119