A home inspection is an examination of a property's safety and current condition. A buyer arranges and pays for a home inspection and—depending on its findings—may choose to move on to closing, renegotiate the sale price, request repairs, or cancel the sales contract. When valuing real estate for investment purposes, a home inspection is one of a number of variables considered. Some potential home buyers often hire home inspectors to research a property and acquire a written report that details its condition, including an assessment of necessary or recommended repairs, maintenance concerns, and any other potentially costly issues. The assessment will determine if the home is up to standard. For a home buyer a home inspection can be very useful as a lot about a newly constructed home or an existing house, and save them money and aggravation. For sellers, having an inspection done before putting their home on the market can afford them the chance to make structural repairs or upgrade and replace systems that may increase the valuation of their property of sale. Typically, a home inspection is done after a sales contract or purchase agreement is signed between a buyer and a seller. For this reason, it's important that the contract include an inspection contingency (also known as a "due diligence" contingency), which allows a buyer time to find an inspector, schedule an inspection, receive the inspector's report, and decide how to proceed based on the information provided. A home cannot fail a home inspection, but a home inspector can merely make a visual observation and reporting on their observations. Home inspectors are charged with describing and reporting on a home’s current physical condition and indicating which components, parts, and systems might need major repairs or might need to be replaced altogether. Depending on the report's assessment, the buyer may decide whether to proceed with the sale, schedule additional inspections, renegotiate the sale price with the homeowner, ask that certain repairs be made, or cancel the contract. If the buyer requests major repairs, they may also ask for a re-inspection with the original inspector to verify that the original problem identified has been remedied. Inspection Process: When Might Have Your Home Inspected? Home inspections can be very helpful while you are getting your home ready to sell before listing your home, to learn about any potential problems it might have when you are in negotiations with buyers. With a home inspector’s report before listing a home for sale means can help decide whether or not to make repairs before putting your home on the market for sale or leave the repairs for the buyers. It will give a better insight about the condition your home and give you a better idea of what types of repair requests buyers might request for. Standard Home Inspection A standard home inspection and a general home inspector’s report will usually cover the visual condition of a home’s interior and exterior. A standard home inspector’s report should include the following: a description of the home’s exterior condition, its structural integrity, whether or not the appliances work, the Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC) Systems do they work and what conditions they are in since they will be tested depending on the time of year and temperature. An inspector will also be checking the interior plumbing, the home’s electrical systems, the roof, attic and visible insulation, ceilings, walls, floors, windows, and doors, the foundation, basement, crawl spaces, interior and exterior drainage, structural, and safety components. Home inspection and what is included in a general home inspection differs from city to city, province to province, and country to country. What your home inspection looks like and what it will include and not include will depend on the person who is inspecting your home, the procedures and methodology they are following depending on the organization and/or licensing bodies which they are a part of. While there might be a general lack of continuity regarding what is included in a standard home inspection, there are some things that are generally not a part of your standard, general home inspection. Most general home inspectors will not be checking for: asbestos, radon, methane, radiation, wood-destroying organisms, mould, mildew and fungi, pests, rodents, or lead. Home inspections doesn’t include the property surroundings during the inspection. Property Inspection Checklist: Property inspection by a qualified home inspector is not a common practice in our country. However, if you have decided to avail the services of a home inspector for the purpose, the following is what the inspection entails. The home inspector will visit the premises of the chosen property, check various aspects and give a final assessment as to the value that the property can carry. If the buyer has chosen to buy an apartment, they usually avail the services of a property valuer and an engineer who help to work out the actual value of the property. Given below are 9 important points that a home inspection checklist should include. #1: Leaks and Seepage of Water: It is important that the interiors and exteriors be checked for any leakage or water seepage. Water seepage in the walls causing damp spots can lead to serious issues later in time. It could be that the external wall is lashed by the rains or the water seeps from the bathroom above the floor that leads to damp walls. These worsen with passing time. Ugly patches develop on the wall that spread slowly to cover it. #2: HVAC System Check: The HVAC systems are not common but most high-end homes come with pre-installed HVAC systems. Therefore, it is a good idea that HVAC system is a part of the new home inspection checklist. The efficiency and working of both the heating and cooling systems should be checked. This will serve to keep the buyers’ energy needs met and bills economical as well. It should be made clear at this time as to who will service these systems in the future and whether the HVAC systems would have to be maintained by the owners or whether it would be a service provided by the builders. #3: Cracks in Walls and Ceilings: The new home inspection checklist should prompt the buyer to thoroughly inspect the interior for cracks in the walls and ceiling. Some of them may not be visible, but it is important that the inspection is done thoroughly to spot them. Any repairs that are required to be done on these should be completed to avoid any heart-aches in the future. If they remain undetected, they may lead on to very serious problems in the future. #4: Room sizes: Room sizes in terms of length, breadth, and height should be measured out and ascertained during the home inspection. This will give the buyer a fair idea as to how to place the furniture snugly into a room and further to use the space properly. #5: Windows and sidings: The buyer may find windows and sidings damaged only when purchasing older properties. This has to be checked out thoroughly and notified to the concerned person before finalising the deal. All the bolts and hooks of the windows have to be checked. The windows should open and close fully. There should be no rot or decay of the wood nor should any cracks be present. The windows should latch properly. #6: Plumbing check: The plumbing system check should be a comprehensive one. Checking out the material used for the piping in the house used for drinking, waste, and draining purposes. Also the plumbing fixtures including taps, water inlet and outlet valves, bathroom flushers, showers, sinks, traps, etc. should be checked thoroughly for leaks in the plumbing joints. #7: Electrical systems check: The main panel, circuit breakers, phase switches, electrical earthing, fans, lights, exhaust fans, and light fixtures, and wiring, among others, have to be checked. Ensure that the main panel and breakers are not outdated. The lights and switches should be in good working condition. All the electrical outlet points should be tested properly. There should be adequate numbers of three-pin electrical outlets in every room. #8: Interiors: As far as interiors are concerned the flooring should be in top condition and there should be no stains on the walls, floors, or ceiling. There should not be any cracks in the walls, ceiling or floors. Check the railings in the balconies, staircases, and steps for firmness. #9: Kitchen: The cabinets and draws should be in good working condition. The water tap in the sink should have adequate water flow. There should be no stains on the kitchen floor. The exhaust fan should be in working condition. In brief a home inspection checklist should be prepared well in advance and the requisite points should be listed down elaborately. This will help the buyer to avoid misses that may prove too costly at a later point in time after having purchased the home. #10: Tile Undulations Living, Bedroom & Dining - Flooring Tiles should be laid with zero slope. So overall area should be in level without any slope or undulations. Levels between tile joints should be equal; Tile joints spacing should be equal. Tile joints has to be filled with suitable grouts. Check the grout for proper filling, i.e., without gaps, undulations & colour variation. Tile damages & chip offs has to be checked; Colour variation has to be checked. Skirting tiles – offset from wall should be equal; edges & corners should not be sharp; floor tile’s joints line should match with skirting tile; also check for damages & colour variations. Toilets, Utilities & Balconies (TUB) – Flooring: Slope: Check floor slope by pouring a bucket of water. Water has to drain fully within two minutes. Check for the position of floor trap; it should be placed such a way that it facilitates water draining properly Levels between the tiles should be equal; Tile joint spacing should be equal. Tile joints has to be filled with suitable grouts. Check the grout for proper filling, i.e., without gaps, undulations & colour variation. Tile damages & chip offs has to be checked; Colour variation has to be checked. Skirting tiles – offset from wall should be equal; edges & corners should not be sharp; floor tile’s joints line should match with skirting tile; Also check for damages & colour variations Toilets, Utilities, Balconies (TUB) & Kitchen – Walls: All walls should be in plumb and right angle All the corners has to be filled with Silicone sealant (Sanitary Sealant) Levels between the tiles should be equal; Tile joint spacing should be equal. Cut tiles around the plumbing fixtures & Electrical boxes should be cut in proper shape and the cut edge should not be visible after fixing Plumbing & Electrical fixtures Tile joints has to be filled with suitable grouts. Check the grout for proper filling, i.e., without gaps, undulations & colour variation. Tile damages & chip offs has to be checked; Colour variation has to be checked.