Buyers: Use the Home Inspection to Gather Information!
Most buyers look at the home that they are going to buy at least twice. But they will see different things each time...and forget some other things that they might like to know. The home inspection is the buyer's opportunity to see the house again and it will be the only time until the final inspection closer to the closing. I was recently reminded by an international buyer how important that it is to know as much as possible about the house that you are buying. They are only here for the week and they will not have the opportunity to be back prior to a couple of days before the closing. So they needed to have their list of questions ready for the home inspector and for them to make the most of their time in the house.
Here is a list of the things that you might want to consider bringing and/or asking at the home inspection:
1. Bring a tape measure and notepad. This is your opportunity to measure windows for blinds or curtains or to measure rooms for new carpeting or flooring. I always have a tape measure with me just in case you need it, but it is always better to be prepared!
2. If you would like your friend/parents/uncle/sister etc. to see the house, invite them to the home inspection. Just make sure that you let your agent know and keep it within reason. Especially if the home is still occupied, you do not want to have 10 people in the house with you! It is still the seller's home and they don't want to come home to find their things moved or displaced by children or other members of your family.
3. Check out the appliances. This is your opportunity to ask the inspector if there is a gas option available for the stove in the kitchen. Or if the dryer is gas or electric. There are many times that a buyer calls me from the appliance store and they want to know what they should buy. Better to know ahead of time so that you don't buy the wrong thing!
4. Plan for any contractors to come on the same day after your inspection time. Of course, please ask your agent to request this of the seller to get permission first. You may want an estimate to add a privacy fence, or an estimate to finish the basement or add new windows. Arranging these appointments on the same day is more convenient for the seller than several different appointments on several different days.
5. Bring paint and carpet samples with you. You can look at the samples with the natural light in the rooms to help you narrow your choices prior to closing.
The home inspection will give you the opportunity to see the house a little closer and allow you to find out more information to help you with your to-do list. Being prepared and making the most of this appointment will make waiting until closing a little easier!