There’s a lot of heat out there, and we’re not just talking about the temperature. Although there are indications that the real estate market may be slowing down, we are not holding our breath because it is now one of the most rapidly moving markets in the country’s history.
The sellers are the ones in charge, and they are aware of their position. They are in the enviable position of being able to demand exactly what they want from the properties in terms of both price and terms.
In turn, this contributes to the fueling of bidding wars for properties that are in good condition and located in decent regions.
It’s easy to get carried away in a situation where there are several offers on the table, but you should stay vigilant. It is acceptable to make concessions on the less significant components of the acquisition; but, you should give considerable consideration to any choice to forego the home inspection.
What a home inspection won’t do
Just as a professional home appraisal won’t let you know about the problems with a home’s systems, a professional home inspection can’t determine a home’s market value.
Not directly. It may impact the value if something major comes to light, but it isn’t something a lender requires before lending money for a home.
Because a home inspection is visual, it won’t give a potential buyer any information about anything that may be hidden behind the walls or beneath floors. It won’t tell a homebuyer if there are dangerous levels of toxins in the air, such as radon.
The inspector will look at the home’s roof, structure, and major systems, such as electrical, heating and cooling, ventilation, and plumbing. Even among these items, if there is a defective part or component that can’t be seen with the naked eye, it won’t end up in the report.
The home inspection is also not a guarantee that the home will be in the same condition when you take possession as it was when the inspection was performed. Anything can happen between those two periods.
What a home inspection will do
Most of all, a home inspection provides the homebuyer with at least some peace of mind.
Inspectors who are worth hiring are those who have extensive experience and know the signs of hidden problems. They don’t hesitate to recommend additional inspections by a specialist.
For instance, if she notices evidence of wood-destroying pests, such as termites, she may recommend that you have the home looked at by a pest inspector.
Should you skip the home inspection?
In a multiple-offer situation, with price and all other terms being equal, the offer from a buyer who waives the home inspection is most likely going to be the one the seller chooses.
If you have hefty home maintenance or emergency fund, it’s worth considering waiving the inspection contingency. If not, doing so is a gamble.
Buying a home without having it checked out by a qualified inspector is the same as buying a home as-is. Understand that you may be buying someone else’s problems.
This isn’t the same as buying a used car as-is because the potential problems you inherit with a home can cost tens of thousands of dollars.
While it’s true that a home inspector can’t possibly tell you about all of the problems a home has or is about to have, the peace of mind that you’ll get with at least knowing that the home’s major systems are in working condition is something to carefully consider before giving it up.