The Commonwealth Blog

Monday, September 23, 2019

When Is It Worth It to Hire a Home Inspector?

Buying a home is a major commitment, and many people worry they’re making the wrong choice. How can you make sure the home you’re considering doesn’t turn into a money pit after you buy it? Hiring a home inspector can help you spot trouble before it hits your wallet where it hurts. While you may not need to have an inspection, it is one of the most valuable home buying tools you can use.

What does a home inspector do? Put simply, they search for problems that can cost you money. Even a house that looks good on the outside may be hiding many costly and potentially dangerous problems.

The price for a home inspection can vary from one market to another, but it’s typically less than $500. Considering the potential price of home repairs, the cost of a home inspection is money well spent.

What Does a Home Inspector Look for?

A home inspector can search for many issues. Here are just four of the potential problems they can alert you to:

  • Mold and Mildew

Mold and mildew can not only leave ugly marks on your walls and floor but may also be toxic to your family or pets. Once mold and mildew set in, they can be very costly and difficult to remove.

  • Leaky Roof

Very few things are more frustrating than buying a house on a beautiful summer day only to discover that the roof leaks during the first rainstorm. Replacing the roof could cost you thousands of dollars, and it's something that can make a big difference in the price you pay for a home.

  • Plumbing Issues

The pipes that carry water to and from your fixtures live inside the walls and under the floor. When everything works on the surface, it’s easy to forget about what’s happening out of sight.

  • Old Wiring

An older house may have been built with outdated wiring technology that is no longer considered safe, while a newer home could have an issue with shoddy workmanship. In either case, you’re better off knowing ahead of time whether the electrical system has potential problems.

This Isn't the Time to Do It Yourself

You may think you have the skills to spot any potential issues with your new home, but unless you have significant experience in the home construction and repair industry, this job is better left to the professionals—it’s just too difficult to be objective.

How to Find a Good Home Inspector

Most times, your real estate agent or your lender can recommend a home inspector. If you would rather find your own, ask around. You probably know someone who has bought or sold a house recently, so they can be a good source of information.

Some states have certification and licensing requirements for home inspectors.earn about Massachusetts home inspection requirements here.

While hiring a home inspector is your choice, the few hundred dollars you spend on an inspection can save you thousands. It’s a price that is well worth paying.


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