Category Archives for Inspections

Getting The Best Price For Your Home

sell your houseSo, the time has come to sell your home and you may be wondering how you can get the best price for the home that you have loved (or hated) so much. Today, selling a home isn’t easy. Mortgage companies are making it more difficult to get a home, believe me, been there done that. Fortunately, home values have rebounded over the past few years and it has made it easier for homeowners to sell their home for a profit. Even though you may be able to make a profit off of your home, actually getting your home sold may be tough, but here are a few things you can do to get it sold for a good price.

Study, Study, Study

One of the most important things that you can do when pricing and getting your home sold is to do your homework. This means that you should look up what homes in your area have sold for in the past 30-60 days and how long they have been for sale. You will also be able to see if those homes had been sold for more or less of their original asking price. You can do this on websites such as Zillow.com, Redfin.com and Trulia.com. It also wouldn’t hurt to reach out to a network of buyers’ agents.

Patience Is A Virtue

Your home may not sell as soon as you put it on the market unless there is a high demand for homes in your area. If it isn’t selling, don’t worry, be patient. Some sellers may be tempted to list their homes for way more than what other homes are going for in their area and this can steer potential buyers away from your home. Your home may have everything they want, but if it is 50 thousand dollars over their price range or over what other houses are estimated at, they are going to look for something else. The best thing to do when trying to sell your home is to price it fairly to avoid having it on the market for too long. If it is on there for too long it becomes “stale” and people are going to ask themselves why it has been on there for so long and then they get it in their head that there is something wrong with it when really, there isn’t, you’re just asking too much.

Stay Local

When selling your home, it is best to stick with an agent that knows your neighborhood. They will be in the perfect spot for knowing which transactions are in the works but not yet available for public records. While you are evaluating the possible agents, you should also find out the price of their most recent sales to see whether the home was sold for more or less of the original asking price. You want to know what your agent has done for other homes in the past because they will most likely repeat their tactics.

Weigh Your Options

Listing agents will usually ask for a 5 or 6 percent commission on the sale price of the home. It is then usually split between the selling and buyer’s agent even though many listing agents split their own share with their brokerage. Sellers can negotiate for a lower commission but then your home may become less of a priority for the agent. The best thing to do is to work with a listing agent that is asking less of a commission.

What to Look for in a Home Inspector

The home inspector is a very important person when it comes to buying your home. They can either be your best friend or your worst enemy. A home inspector can tell you whether you are buying a lemon and even warn you about the potential problems that can arise with the home. Your inspector will either give you a good feeling about the house or a bad feeling. The inspectors report is going to go back to the bank and if they are not willing to work with you, your bank may not approve your loan, especially if there are major issues with the home.

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The first thing you want to look for in a home inspector is their qualifications. You want to find one that has the top qualifications. Buying your home is most likely going to be the biggest investment you ever make, so you are going to need an inspector that is going to give you a direct and hands-on experience. It is important to find a home inspector that doesn’t have to disassemble a house to know what is inside of the walls and how everything is put together. Many things are hidden from plain sight, and your inspector needs to know what to look for and how to look for them. If at all possible, choose an inspector who has experience in home-building and who has been involved in the installation and layout of homes.

Don’t be fooled by some of these inspectors “certifications”. Home inspectors who only have a few weeks of course and study time are not good choices. You want to find someone who has years of experience, since this is what it really takes to know a house inside and out and what to look for. Check into how long the inspector has been in the business and how make inspections he has performed on his own. You want someone who has been in the business for a long time, not someone who is doing this for fun as a side job. Make sure that they have professional affiliations and certifications. If they are affiliated with the NAHI, ICBO, EPA, or AARST, they are a good choice for an inspector.

Make sure you obtain a written report about the inspection. Do not accept the hand written checklist with vague and general responses that is given at the end of the inspection, request a detailed written report. A checklist is difficult to understand and may not have all of the details you need. An inspection report should have three basic areas: an overview, maintenance items, and major repair items. The overview is a detailed picture of the house that itemizes all of the major components and their conditions, Maintenance items are items that need normal maintenance or attention. Major repair items are any defects that could cause a potential and present issue that will cost you a significant amount of money near term. These items should be clearly identified in the report with the estimated repair/replacement cost if at all possible.

Your home inspector is a very important person when it comes to your home buying experience. Do not settle for less that you deserve. Remember, this is one of the biggest commitments you are ever going to make, so make sure you know everything about your future home and get all the answers you need from your inspector.

Common Home Inspection Issues

When you are buying a house, an inspector has to come out and inspect inside and outside of the home in search of any issues that may prevent the bank from approving your loan. It is your responsibility to take over the issues once you purchase the house, this is why the home inspection is so important. It is important to know what issues are in your home so that they can be fixed.

Roof problems are one of the most common issues found during a home inspection. A damaged or poorly maintained roof can lead to major problems in the future, such as water damage. Whole roof repairs can be expensive and should definitely be factored into the price of the home. Most buyers are not willing to compromise on the roof because they are so expensive to repair. If the roof still has a few years of life left on it, you shouldn’t expect the current homeowners to replace it.roof-540835_640

Environmental issues are huge among inspectors and have become increasingly strict. If there is radon, lead-based paint, mold and asbestos in a home that you are potentially buying, they may need to be removed before you can move in or before the bank will approve you. These are all health concerns and are very dangerous. The same goes for a home that has well water. You are going to want to get your well tested to make sure it does not have iron, copper, manganese, etc in it.   These are things that are going to make your home inspection not go well.

Poor ventilation is another common issue that home inspectors find. A home that does not have a significant amount of airflow has the risk of developing mold problems. One of the most common imperfections is a bathroom that is vent dumping into the attic and not through the roof. This makes for the perfect environment for moisture and mold growth.

Another common issue that is found during inspections is foundation issues. If there are any kinds of foundation issues on the home, a bank will most likely not approve your mortgage. This is because it is a liability to the bank. You want to make sure the foundation can be repaired and if possible, try to get the cost of the repair taken off the sale price of the home or make the current homeowner pay for the repair and leave the price of the home alone.

Electrical safety concerns are also a major problem found during home inspections. Older homes may not have electrical systems that are up to codes such as ground fault breaker outlets  and grounded outlets throughout the house. These are all necessary for a safe living environment, especially when you think about all of the appliances that need to be plugged into these outlets. If your future home has knob and tube wiring, a lot of insurance companies are not going to insure the home.

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If you are buying a home, keep a look out for these issues. The home inspector is going to point them out, but it will also help if you are also keeping an eye out for any other issues that you may think will stop you from buying your home.