Every home buyer should have a home inspection.
Buyers want to know that there are no major defects in the home they are buying - no one likes hidden surprises. But here's the thing. Unless you are buying new construction, do not expect the home to be perfect. All homes have ongoing maintenance requirements that are a part of home ownership. There are bound to be some small issues in every home, no matter how well maintained. If you expect a perfectly clean bill of health, you are sure to be disappointed.
The home inspector will point many items out to you and to be sure, they are items you will want to consider repairing. Do not assume, however, that the Seller will repair every matter brought up by the home inspector. When you decide on an purchase price, your buyer agent will take in to account the condition of the home when determining price. The things you know about should be considered in your price. In other words, if you know the roof is 20-years-old, and settle on a price accordingly, do not expect to come back after the home inspection and ask for money off because the roof is old.
The things I look for are things we did not know about that are health, safety or major expense issues not previously considered. Are there structural issues? Is there something wrong with the electrical box or wiring? Did the inspector find termites? Maybe there is a major system is not working? To be sure, I want my buyers to be satisfied with the condition of the house and have the opportunity to either walk away or get items repaired.
Home inspectors can give you a lot of good information about home maintenance and ways to improve your home's condition going forward. It does not necessarily mean that the Seller will do all that work for you.
It can be scary and overwhelming to hear a home inspector give a long list of items that should be addressed. Having realistic expectations going into the inspection makes things easier. Take some time to consider the price you are paying and the condition you thought the house was in at time of offer. Then you can make a decision about whether to move forward or if there are adjustments or repairs warranted.
Just do not expect the house to be perfect.
About the Author: Christine Smith is a Realtor, Buyer's Agent, Attorney, social media fan, parent and Canton resident. She writes about real estate and events in the Canton area on her blog – Canton MA Events and Real Estate