8 Considerations To Make When Conducting Home Inspections
8 Considerations To Make When Conducting Home Inspections
What To Inspect Before Selling Your Home
Before you sell your property, you should have it thoroughly inspected. If you are thinking about selling your house, you must realize that these home inspections are an integral part of the entire process. It's best to schedule the inspection before having open houses or before allowing would-be buyers to view your property.
You must know what to expect during such inspections and learn why it's best to hire an experienced home inspector.
The information below will help shed light on why home inspections are crucial. Plus, you'll get some helpful details about which sections of your home should be given particular attention during an inspection.
1Let Experts Conduct The Home Inspection
As a home seller, one way to protect yourself from liability is by having a home inspection; and it's best done by either the NAHI (National Association of Home Inspectors) or ASHI (American Society of Home Inspectors). A trained and experienced inspector will likely find problems that you've never noticed before or even issues regarding your property that remained undetected during previous inspections.
Such is possible because things can change quickly, and perhaps a certain item or furniture hid the problem from view when the past inspections made. In general, other home inspectors won't take the time to check out inaccessible areas. However, once you've decided to sell, perhaps you've already moved your belongings thus revealing the imperfections or problems that your house may have.
2Schedule More Than One Inspection
To be on the safe side, what's best is to schedule an extra inspection before conducting an open house or a public viewing of your property that's for sale. However, be aware that the cost of such inspection will be shouldered by you. If the house has been recently checked by a reliable inspector, you could instead take some time off to check the entire property yourself. Through this, you could pinpoint new problems or perhaps observe a few issues that could potentially become big problems in the future.
Check the entire house and pay attention to strange smells. Whether you've opened or closed the windows, the odor should be fresh, not moldy, and definitely not a smell that bears a hint of gas. In case you detect a sulfur-like odor, this could indicate a gas leak, which is a serious problem because a gas explosion can cause huge damage to property and even death or serious injury to homeowners. Get out of the house as soon as possible if you suspect a gas leak and get in touch with the right people who can address the issue.
3Order Line Repairs When Necessary
When people move out of a house, they could unknowingly damage a gas dryer or a line. If this happens, open all windows and doors to allow the gas to dissipate; then call a plumber who can fix the problem, particularly if a line was damaged. In case you detect a musty or moldy odor, it's possible that your house is infested with molds. This is a huge possibility if you notice marks of water in areas like the bathroom, utility room, kitchen, and others; this also means water leakage.
Stains could also form on walls and even wall-to-wall carpeting in houses with concrete floors. In case there is a foul smell, this could be due to garbage, rotting food, or a dead animal. In case a dead or a wild animal is involved, call a pest control company who can investigate the property more thoroughly.
4Evaluate The Utilities
Areas where blockages can be a problem, such as sewage lines, as well as kitchen and bathroom lines, should be assessed. Once you are satisfied that all is well, you can then conduct a viewing of your home for buyers. If you are a buyer, only make an offer once you have carefully examined everything.
Remember that after you have removed the clutter and cleaned the house, your perspective can quickly change. Initially, you must look at everything closely to determine if anything is different. Then, be sure to double check if utilities are still working, so check the lights, faucet, drains, and other appliances.
5Hire An Electrician For Repairs
It's a must to check if the heating and air conditioning system are still in good condition, but don't attempt to repair electrical problems on your own. As mentioned earlier, avoid doing gas line repairs by yourself too; always call a professional when it comes to such dangerous matters. Moreover, see to it that the toilets are flushing properly. Check if the water in the tub flows freely and if water from the sink and shower drains quickly.
In case the water tub is sluggish, perhaps you should call a plumber. If the house comes with appliances, check each appliance to see if it is still working properly. In case you encounter problems, check the Home Warranty Plan to determine whether or not you purchased it or if it came with the house as well; ask the agent or seller if he can take care of the repairs. All light fixtures should be working, plus it's best to change all the bulbs as well.
6Check The HVAC System
Even if the outdoor temperature is extremely hot or cold, don't forget to test the HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) system. Perhaps you need a new filter for the furnace, and any homeowner can readily replace this. Again, if you smell gas, there could be some leakage. The first thing that you should do is turn off the air conditioning system and heaters, then call a professional who can check everything.
A garage with a solid core door that automatically shuts if there is a gas leak is a huge advantage, as this will protect your house from fire and other gas-related accidents. This type of garage door opener can be set to stop or go on the reverse, in case it comes into contact with a person or a thing. There should also be a safety valve that helps in regulating water heater pressure and temperature.
7Test Your Safety Valves
It's a must for safety valves to work, so be sure to test them. Be careful when tinkering with old heaters because cranking the safety valve might break it or cause it to malfunction. Any appliance or item that utilizes gas must be at least eighteen inches from the floor, and this is particularly important because this prevents gas fumes from collecting in a certain area, which could then cause an explosion or a big fire.
In case your area often experiences earthquakes or hurricanes, movable things or appliances including heaters must be bolted to the floor. During natural calamities, these could get damaged or cause a fire. Thus, take safety precautions, and you can check if your region or state has guidelines regarding that.
8Test Your Smoke Detectors
See to it that you test your smoke detectors from time to time to ensure that they are still working and if need be, replace their batteries. Each bedroom, the hallways, and common rooms must have smoke detectors. It's also beneficial to have a carbon monoxide detector. Keep a fire extinguisher in the garage, kitchen, or other places where fires may start. In case you don't have a fire extinguisher yet, be sure to buy a few.
If your property is fenced, check the perimeter to make sure that the fences are still in good condition. This is a must, especially if you have a spa or pool because in case accidents occur, you will likely be held liable. Gates that automatically close are great too. Also, don't forget to double check the fireplace because defects can cause fires or release dangerous gases inside the house. So, see to it that it is working properly and that there's good ventilation.
You are now more aware of what home inspectors look for. Keep in mind that by having a thorough home inspection, you are protecting yourself and your interests from liability. So, don't forgo a home inspection just because it's an added expense, and have an expert do the job because this can save you from a lot of trouble in the future.