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Get your “Dream House” checked so it’s not a Nightmare!

James Stageberg House (1981)

Creative Commons License photo credit: ChicagoGeek

Is It Important to Have House Inspections before Buying one?

Buying a home is an expensive process and there are many hidden or extra costs that you may not have factored in.  One of these is the building and inspection.  It is the purchaser’s responsibility to make sure the contract states that you will obtain a building and pest inspection within 7-14 days (or whatever time you stipulate).


The contract is not unconditional until finance has been approved and there is satisfactory building and pest inspection.  That means it is ‘satisfactory’ to you.  Importantly then if there is a significant structural problem with the building that could cost ‘000’s to repair or there has been evidence of flea, termite or cockroach infestation then this gives you a reason to reconsider your purchase.   With pest infestation even though the pest may have been treated it is important, especially with termites to make sure there has been no recurrence. 


It is not a waste of money to pay for a building and pest inspection.  Imagine buying a home only to move in and find that the wiring needs replacing.  Or that you have termites in your fence and that needs replacing. 


A little known fact and one that over 905 of households are not aware of is that you should endeavor to have a pest inspection every 12 months and a full building inspection every 3-5 years.  The cost far outweighs the investment you are trying to protect.



Physical inspections of the house that you want to buy is one of the most important procedures in the process of home-buying and it should be one of the conditions that one should take upon closing the sale. There are two major options that you could try before buying one, formal and informal inspection. In this way you will be able to prevent stress and spending a lot of money in the future.


Typically a building inspection on your home is a physical examination of the heating and central air conditioning systems, electrical systems, interior plumbing, the roof and foundations, attic and basements, visible insulation, walls and ceilings, floors and windows. Some inspections may also include major appliances and outdoor plumbing. The typical cost of an inspection varies depending on the area, size of the home, and services the inspector is providing.   It is fair to say that it is not an excessive cost and should come in well under $1000 for both the building and pest on a typical home.  


A written report should be provided after each inspection.  Make sure you keep these in a safe place for future inspections, it can often be helpful.





Consider Special Inspections

Depending on the property and your personal sensitivities, you may want to arrange specialized inspections for hazards from floods, earthquakes, and other natural disasters. The same goes for environmental health hazards such as mold, asbestos, and lead. And if the general inspection revealed problems with the roof, foundation, or other areas that are hard to access or potentially expensive to repair, you may also want to hire a specialized inspector.

After the Inspections Are Completed

If the inspection reports show the house is in good shape, you can proceed with the purchase, knowing that you’re getting what you paid for.

If the inspections bring problems to light — such as an antiquated plumbing system or major termite damage — you can negotiate to have the seller pay for necessary repairs or to lower the purchase price, or you can back out of the deal, assuming your contract is written to allow you to do so.

For more information please email Julie@novastarfinance.com.au


Collier House (demolished) from HABS
Creative Commons License photo credit: whitewall buick

posted in First Home Owner, Home, Home Loan, Loan, Mortgage by Finance Help

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