After your Contract is accepted the Next Step is the Home Inspection
WHY SHOULD YOU GET A HOME INSPECTION?
Is an Inspection Really Necessary? The long and short answer to that question is absolutely!
A real estate home inspection is when a licensed qualified home inspector takes a look around the property you are considering purchasing and informs you of obvious and potential damage or problems with the property. Louisiana requires that all inspectors be licensed by the Louisiana State Board of Home Inspectors.
Tips For Home Sellers: Getting Ready For Home Inspection
- Make sure all interior and exterior light fixtures work.
- Provide access to the furnace, water heater and electric panel.
- Install a new furnace filter. It will be looked at during the inspection and be considered as part of the overall condition of the furnace or the heat pump.
- Ensure all windows operate smoothly. If some are stuck or painted shut, the impression will be that many windows cannot open.
- Replace all damaged window screens.
- Tighten all doorknobs and tighten or repair all handrails, also check to be sure all interior doors will latch to the strike plate.
- Make sure the attic is accessible, the inspector will enter the attic
- Be sure that there is a minimum of one smoke detector per floor and that it is in proper working condition
- Divert all water away from the house, i.e. down spouts, sump pump, condensation drain, etc.
- Remove grade or mulch from contact with siding, preferably 6 or more inches of clearance.
- Proper grading recommended at the house including under decks/porches. Grade should slope away from structure.
- Remove rotting wood/firewood from contact with the house.
- Clean out dirty gutters or debris from the roof.
- Make sure all plumbing fixtures are in proper working order with no leaks.
- Check that toilets are secure to the floor.
- Check that bath vents are properly vented to the outside.
- Install GFCI receptacles near all water sources; check present GFCI receptacles for proper operation.
- Remove paint, solvents, gas, etc. from crawlspace, basement, attic, porch, etc.
- If the house is vacant make sure all utilities are turned on.
Working with an inspector is an essential part to buying a home. It helps to determine the quality of the house and working components. The job of the inspector is to find anything that might be a larger problem in the house before you move in. If there is something that the inspector finds wrong with the home, you will have the ability to ask for repairs or re-negotiate the purchase price of the home.
Property inspections often shed light on items or repairs that may not be visible. Knowledge is very important and can mean the difference between taking on a project or thousands of dollars in repairs and/or professional help. Buyers want to know ahead of time what works and does not work in the house before proceeding further with the sale. In Louisiana the inspection days in the purchase contract are usually 10-12 days to complete buyer’s inspections. During this time the buyer may also conduct termite inspections, structural inspections and pool inspections.
Once the Home Inspector completes their analysis of the property, the Lake Charles Home Buyer and REALTOR can meet with the home inspector to go over any items that need attention. Most of the Lake Charles LA home inspectors create a report they can share which includes photos and video of the property.
A complete home inspection report includes items inside and outside of the house including:
- A/C and heating systems
When the buyer completes their home inspection the buyer’s agent will prepare an Inspection Response Form listing items buyer would Like seller to repair or replace. Seller’s are allowed to respond to the inspection and buyer will have a final opportunity to accept or reject seller’s response electing to move forward with the Louisiana home purchase. For more information about home inspections visit the Louisiana State Board of Home Inspectors website.
UNDERSTANDING FLOOD INSURANCE
Lake Charles Home Buyers can also verify Flood Zones and obtain Flood Insurance Quotes during the Home Inspection Period.
Got Termites in Southwest Louisiana? It is not uncommon for older homes on piers or wood frame homes to have termites or other wood destroying insects.
As a Realtor, I am not always going to be able to point this out because I do not crawl underneath the house. This is why a home inspection is so important. If there is any active infestation of wood destroying insects the house will need to be treated or a Buyer cannot obtain their financing. So once discovered the treatment becomes a negotiating point between Buyer and Seller especially if the purchase contract spells out who will absorb the expense of any recommended treatment if any wood destroying insects are found.
I recently spotted active termites while showing homes to a first time home buyer. They were not hard to see since they were swarming at the front steps!
Copyright 2014© Marilyn Boudreaux
Marilyn Boudreaux, REALTOR® 337-499-9592
Century 21 Mike D. Bono & Co.’s
4410 Nelson Road
Lake Charles, LA USA 70605