Do You Really Need A Home Inspection For Your Washington, DC Condo?
When you buy a condo, it seems a lot simpler than buying a house. But in many ways, it isn't.
Both are a complicated set of systems and appliances in a structure that is better if it is sound.
With a house, getting an inspection is a no-brainer. And you know what? It's a no-brainer with a condo, too. Sure, the condo association is the one to maintain the structure and the common elements, but you are a part of that condo association. You need to know what you're getting into.
The inspector can look over the unit itself, checking the appliances, the heating and air conditioning unit, the wiring and plumbing, and tell you all kinds of stuff you need to know about the building itself.
He'll look at the masonry and the roof. If there is a boiler room in the basement, he'll check that out.
Your contract to buy your new place will include an opportunity receive and review the building's "resale package", with information about the budget, among other things. If the inspector finds, say a roof that will need replacement in the near future, that may not be a bad thing if there is money in the reserve funds to fix it? If the boiler is dying of old age, can the pay for the replacement without passing the hat in the form of a big special assessment?
The home inspection is a very important introduction to your new place. You'll not only learn whether or not the appliances all work, but what to do when one won't start because a breaker switch is flipped. If the toilet starts running and looks like it's going to overflow, where is the water cut off valve that will avoid a flood in your downstairs neighbor's apartment?
Buying a condo, especially if it's your first place, is a major life milestone. And your home inspector is an important part of the team to help you make it happen.