Home inspections are important and can save you thousands of dollars in potential costly repairs, so selecting the right home inspector is critical.
Once you have a signed contract you need to identify a home inspector ASAP, as the option period clock starts ticking.
In the Dallas area, home inspectors face their own unique challenges that require knowledge specific to the North Texas region. A home inspector must be familiar with certain issues including:
- North Texas soil and weather. The constant weather changes and soil types can do a number on homes in the area and cause issues such as foundation problems.
- Wood destroying insects and other pests. Termites, carpenter ants and bees, and wood boring beetles are common here and your home inspector should be well aware of the signs of infestation. Having a home inspector who is Structural Pest Control Service certified for WDI inspections is crucial. It is very convenient if your home inspector is licensed to do the Structural & Mechanical Inspection and the WDI (termite) inspection at the same time. Often it saves you money too!
- Codes and regulations specific to the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex.It is obviously important to have an inspector who knows the facts specific to your home, as opposed to codes in another state.
We are lucky here in Texas because not every state requires home inspectors to be licensed; and certified; see New Mexico. So it should go without saying that your home inspector should be TREC licensed, although do not depend on that alone. Take the time to do a little research on your potential inspector. Here are a few things to look for:
- Professional organizations. There are several reputable home inspection organizations both on a local and national level that can help weed out the pretenders. Home inspectors join these organizations because it helps legitimize them and is a resource for continuing education. Some organizations require a certain number of inspections or testing to join. It is also a good sign if they are Better Business Bureau (BBB) accredited so you can check on previous complaints or concerns.
- Ask your real estate agent for referrals. Your agent has most likely worked with numerous home inspectors and has an idea of the level of satisfaction their buyers have had with certain agents, so they can be a valuable reference. It is always a good idea to research their referrals further, see what kind of reviews and testimonials they have online. The more feedback the better when making a decision.
- Don’t be afraid to ask a potential inspector about their services.Your home inspector should be on your side and be able to answer any questions regarding their work. A 600-Point, with multiple digital images Home Inspection can help you save money and negotiate a fair selling price and should be expected.
- Ask for examples of their reports.Their reports should be thorough and informative. As a buyer you should read the Inspection Report in its entirety so you are fully informed on the home you are about to purchase but make sure you are also going to receive an Issue Summary Report that will give a summary of all of the defects that you can easily review and use to negotiate the selling price. Most home inspectors will email you the report the day of the inspection.
- Be aware of their response.Make sure they seem to know what they are talking about and they answer without hesitation. A good inspector will review the report with you and answer any questions you have in layman terms so you understand the property inspection.
- Ask that you be present for the inspection.An inspector should have no problem with you being there for the inspection; in fact, they should encourage it.
- Make sure they have “errors and omissions” insurance. E and O insurance covers you and offers peace of mind should anything have been overlooked in the inspection. A reputable inspector should be insured.
- See if they back their work with a guarantee or warranty.This shows that they are confident in their work and offers you additional peace of mind.
- Do they specialize in residential property?Unless you’re moving into an outlet mall, you want your home inspector to be, well, a home inspector.
A home is most likely the biggest purchase you will ever make, so it makes sense that you do the research and find a home inspector who will help you be certain it is a sound investment.
With more than 25 years working in the construction industry, Keith Boggs of Stonebriar Property Inspections offers thorough, accurate, home inspection services of the highest quality in the greater DFW area, with both a Dallas Home Inspection office and a Frisco Home Inspection office.
Contact Keith Boggs of Stonebriar Property Inspections if you have any questions about this post, or would like to schedule his services.