Mike Croxall: Preparing For Your Home Inspection

Monday, August 14, 2017 - by Mike Croxall, president, Home Builders Association of Greater Chattanooga

Whether you’re closing on your first house or your fifth, buying a home can be both exciting and overwhelming at the same time. But don’t let your long to-do list deter you from completing one of the most important items: scheduling a home inspection.

Although not required by law, many lenders in the Chattanooga area do require a home inspection, which helps protect the large investment you are about to make. It’s important to learn as much as you can about the physical condition of the home before you buy it, to ensure it’s a sound investment. And while an inspection cannot guarantee the condition of a home, the inspector can alert you to items that need repair or any safety concerns. 

Here are a few things to keep in mind about the home inspection process.

1)    Inspections Should Happen As Soon as Possible

It is the buyer’s responsibility to schedule and pay for the inspection. You should schedule the home inspection as soon as you can after your offer has been accepted. This ensures you’ll have enough time to request repairs or to get out of the contract if the inspector discovers a deal-breaker for you. When choosing an inspector, your realtor may have a recommendation or you can find one through the American Society of Home Inspectors.

2)    Inspections Describe the Basic Physical Condition of a Home

An inspector’s job is examine the current condition of a house. This includes pointing out what components and systems may need major repair or replacement. The inspector will examine the home's exterior, including steps, porches, decks, chimneys, roof, windows and doors.

Inspectors also look inside the home to examine the attic, electrical components, plumbing, heating and air conditioning, basement/crawlspaces and garages. A home inspection will not include cosmetic issues that do not affect the working condition of the home.

3)    Be There on Inspection Day

As the buyer, it’s important for you to be at the home for the inspection. Ask the inspector if you can follow him or her around to better understand what they are examining and to ask questions if needed. This is a great way for you to get to know your new home and become familiar with areas that may need attention.

After the inspection, the inspector will provide you with a report. You can then determine if you will ask the seller to make any repairs or give you a credit to make the repairs on your own. It’s important to keep in mind that no home is perfect. But the inspection report should help you determine if it’s the perfect home for you.

Inspections for New Construction Homes

If you’re buying a newly constructed home, the process is slightly different than the inspection for existing homes. Before you go to settlement, you and your builder will do a walk-through to conduct a final inspection. This walk-through provides an opportunity to spot items which may need to be corrected or adjusted, learn about the way your new home works and ask questions about anything you don't understand.

Create a checklist when inspecting the house. The list should include everything that needs attention, and you and your builder should agree to a timetable for repairs. It is important that you be thorough and observant during the walk-through. Examine the surfaces of counters, fixtures, floors and walls carefully for possible damage. Sometimes disputes arise because a buyer may discover a gouge in a counter top after move-in, and there is no way to prove whether it was caused by the builder's workers or the buyer's movers. 

To learn more about the home inspections for both new and existing homes in Chattanooga and the surrounding area, contact HBAGC at info@hbagc.net or 423-624-9992.



Transit Planner Jarrett Walker To Deliver Free Public Lecture Thursday

Jarrett Walker will deliver a free public lecture, "Transit Truths," as the first installment of the Robert C. Taylor Lecture Series hosted by the Chattanooga Design Studio this Thursday from 5:30-7:30 p.m. at the Bessie Smith Cultural Center Performance Hall , 200 E. MLK Blvd.  Doors open at 5:30 p.m. and the program begins at 6 p.m.    Blythe Bailey, administrator ... (click for more)

Georgia Trust Announces 2018 List Of State's 10 'Places In Peril'

The Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation released its 2018 list of 10  Places in Peril  in the state.   Sites on the list include: A.J. Gillen Department Store in Maxeys (Oglethorpe County); Bibb City Elementary School in Columbus (Muscogee County); Cuthbert Water Tower in Cuthbert (Randolph County); Fire Station No. 2 in Rome (Floyd County); Fort ... (click for more)

Longest-Serving County Official Knowles Is First In Line To Sign Up For New Term

Bill Knowles is one of the longest-serving officials in Hamilton County history, and he's not through yet. County clerk since 1974, he was the first in line on Friday morning to pick up his petition for re-election. Then he beat everyone back with the completed form. Mr. Knowles said, "I ran in 1974 on a campaign of ending the long tag lines. We put in a tag by mail system ... (click for more)

River Gorge Explorer Will Log Final Cruises In January

After operating on the Tennessee River for more than nine years, Aquarium President and CEO Keith Sanford informed staff and volunteers that cruise operations aboard the River Gorge Explorer will be ending in January. “After developing a new strategic plan and carefully evaluating the Aquarium’s resources, we have decided to stop operating the boat,” said Mr. Sanford. “We are ... (click for more)

Signal Mountain Should Be Problem Solvers Around The City

Re: Roy Exum’s “Stay, Signal Mountain, Stay”  Well this article is something to think about. I think the split could go either way, and Signal Mountain schools would still flourish, as they have done for the past several years. What I'm worried about is why Signal Mountain has not yet had the guts to go be problem solvers at Howard, or Tyner, or Central. Why do ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: How Would I Vote?

I don’t know what to think or who to believe in the debacle surrounding Alabama’s Roy Moore and his quest for a Senate seat. I have no earthly idea what he did or how he acted 40 years ago. Heck, I can’t remember what I did or how I acted 40 years ago but I do recall I kissed some minors back then. To be real honest, they were the only ones that would let me, this because I was ... (click for more)