Frequently Asked Questions
Can I Perform the Inspection Myself?
Inspecting your own potential house is not recommended. Home inspectors are specially trained to look for things you may miss. Unless you are a home inspector yourself, seek out a professional. Some states or financial lenders require a licensed inspector to complete the inspection.
What Is the Cost of a Home Inspection?
The cost of a home inspection depends on a number of factors including the type of home (condominium, townhouse, single family, duplex, etc.), the square footage and age of the home, and if there are any special built-in features such as a pool or casita. A typical condominium starts around $200 and a single family home will start around $300. Be sure you understand the inspector’s payment terms. Most inspectors require payment at the time of the inspection.
According to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, a typical range might be between $300 and $500.
What Is Covered Under This Inspection?
Inspectors located in Nevada must be certified by the State of Nevada Real Estate division in order to perform a home inspection. The standards of practice that State of Nevada inspectors follow are regulated by the Nevada Administrative Code (NAC), NAC 645D.450 through 645D.580. Click on the following link for a complete list
Many NV inspectors exceed these standards, and most belong to a national and/or a local inspector professional association that have their own code of conduct and ethical standards. Be sure to ask when you are interviewing a potential inspector as to what certifications and associations they belong to (e.g. ASHI, InterNACHI, SNAPPI). Most inspectors also carry a standard pre-inspection contract which they will ask you to sign before the inspection takes place. The contract should contain the scope of the services and list any limitations of the inspection, or disclaimers. Be sure you read this agreement and ask questions BEFORE the home inspection takes place! Many disagreements happen because the buyer did not understand the limitations and the scope of services provided. Remember it is a visual examination of all accessible and visible items. There are many thing an inspector cannot see.
How Much Experience Does the Inspector Have?
Inquire about the inspector’s level of experience and ask for references. Inspectors who are confident in their service should willingly supply you with a list of references that can confirm they provide quality service.
How Long Will the Inspection Take?
The length of time for an inspection can vary depending on many factors such as the size of the home, the age, special features such as a pool or spa, and whether the home is vacant or occupied. One of the biggest factors affecting the time it takes is the condition. A general rule of thumb for a home in generally clean condition is around 1 hour per 1,000 square feet. If a home is occupied at the time of the inspection, if there are inaccessible areas, pets, tenants, buyers and sellers in attendance, if the home is in poor condition – all of these factors will affect the length of time it takes to complete the inspection. You or your agent representative should inform the inspector of these circumstances when inquiring or scheduling.
Does the Inspector Need to Specialize in Residential Inspection?
Ask about an inspector’s specialties. There are various types of real estate, and all need varying forms of inspection before purchase. Commercial real estate is different from residential real estate, which is different from multi-family real estate.
What Type of Inspection Report is Supplied and When Do I Receive It?
A written report (usually sent via email) with a detailed list of findings, descriptions and photos is provided after the inspection is completed. The State of Nevada NAC 645D Standards of Practice lists the minimum information that must be reported. Most inspectors exceed these minimum standards. Some inspectors complete the report on-site, but most will send a completed report within 24 hours. Be sure to ask the inspector how long it will take to complete the report.
hat is listed on the form.
Am I Required to Attend the Inspection?
The home inspection is a valuable experience for you as a home buyer and future home owner. The inspector should not only allow, but should encourage you to attend the inspection. If you do attend, just remember that the inspector will need time to complete the inspection so he has an informed perspective. Try to avoid distracting the inspector. This reduces the chances of mistakes or missed issues. Ask the inspector if you can show up at the end, AFTER completion of the physical portion of the inspection, and have him walk you through to review any findings, discuss maintenance issues and show you how things work. This is your best and possibly only opportunity to learn everything you need to know about the home, so take advantage. Knowing what is normal or routine wear & tear, and what is a major problem will minimize confusion and help you later in maintaining your home.
Does the Home Inspector Pass/Fail a Home?
No. The inspection is designed to give you a physical assessment of the overall condition of the home, and what needs to be repaired, replaced or monitored in the future. Every house is different. There may be some requirements that need to be met in order to satisfy your financial lender. Even if a home has an inordinately high number of repairs needed, it does not necessarily mean that the house has “failed” the inspection.
What Happens if There Are Problems Found During the Inspection?
In some instances there may be a long list of problems that come up during the inspection. Other times there are few issues, ad minimal or routine maintenance type problems discovered. Who makes the repairs depends upon the purchase contract. An “as is” contract means the buyer assumes responsibility for all repairs. In most cases the buyer may negotiate for the repairs. If the seller is not agreeable to paying for any repairs, you will have the option of arranging follow-up evaluations and obtaining cost estimates. You can decide whether to accept or terminate the contract at this point. One word of caution. It is most often best to ask for a credit vs asking the seller to make the repairs. Sellers often find the “cheapest” solution to a requested repair. Be sure any evaluation or repair is done by a licensed contractor!
What Should I Be Looking for When Choosing My Home Inspector?
The first questions you should ask the inspector is what is your background and how many years have you been inspecting? A construction background with at least 5 years’ experience inspecting should be the minimum. There are many different types of properties, so you will also want to ask the inspector if he/she is familiar with the type of property that you are buying. For example, older homes, luxury and high-end properties, custom homes, rural type properties with well or septic systems, homes with pools/spas, etc. Commercial real estate is quite different from residential real estate, which is different from multi-family real estate. Allow yourself a few minutes time to speak with the inspector directly and ask about his/her experience, and do a little research to determine if the inspector is reputable, with verifiable reviews and good references. The few minutes of research you do now will save you a lot in the long run.