Buyer's Guide
Lansing Area Real Estate
Home Inspections...a most important part of the process

When you make your offer to purchase a home, you agree to accept the property “AS IS” in its present
condition. However, the Buy & Sell Contract includes a contingency granting you the right to engage a private inspector, or group of inspectors, to examine the home's condition.

The inspection is a way of discovering if there are any hidden problems that were not obvious when you personally viewed the home and made your offer. You have the right to terminate the contract if you are not satisfied with the results of the inspection by giving the seller written notice within a specified time period.  
Safety issues and Life Expectancy...
A typical inspection includes an examination of the home's structure, roof, ceilings,  floors, foundation, windows, doors, plumbing, built-in appliances, heating, cooling, ventilation, and electrical systems.  The inspector will go through the house looking for safety issues and other problems in each room.  When he's finished, he will present you with a detailed report and a bill for $250 to $300. The report will give you a good idea of the condition and expected life of each component that makes up the house he's examined.

A home inspection will take between two to three hours to complete. During the inspection you are welcome to accompany the inspector and to ask all the questions you wish.  The inspector will
answer your questions and explain how the systems of the home operate.  He will disclose the condition of the home in simple layman's terms that you can understand.  A comprehensive report is then provided by the inspector in an easy-to-read format, allowing you to know more about what you're buying before you purchase it.  The inspector's report is not an endorsement or a condemnation, it is merely an objective statement of problems and recommended fixes.

After reviewing the report, you're agent will draft an addendum to the purchase agreement.  You must inform the seller, in writing that the inspection has been completed and that you are either accepting or rejecting the home in it's current condition.  If no concessions are requested from the seller, you can waive your inspection contingency and proceed with the sale as per the original contract.

If you wish to have the seller repair some items or wish to pursue a reduction in price, you must inform the seller in writing that the inspection contingency will be removed "under the following conditions".  Then request whatever you wish to negotiate.

If no serious problems are found, the inspection will pay off indirectly in maintenance tips and the assurance that you are making a sound investment.  


Pest inspection
Buyer's who have been granted an FHA approved loan will be required to have the home inspected for wood destroying pests. We would recommend that you have a pest inspection done regardless of what type of loan you are getting. Carpenter ants, carpenter bees, and even termites are not unknown in the Mid-Michigan area. A pest inspection will cost approximately $65.

Radon inspection
You can't see Radon, you can't smell it or taste it, but it may be a problem in your home. Radon comes from the natural (radioactive) breakdown of uranium in soil, rock and water and gets into the air you breathe. Radon can be found all over the U.S. It can get into any type of building and build up to high levels. You and your family are most likely to get your greatest exposure at home because that's where you spend most of your time. Testing is the only way to know if you and your family are at risk from radon. A radon test will usually cost an additional $70 to $90.

Well and septic
Homes not served by public water and sewers usually depend on a well for their drinking water and a septic system to dispose of their wastewater.  In this case, you will most certainly want to have the drinking water tested and you will want to be absolutely certain that both the well and septic systems are operating properly.  A well and septic inspection will cost an additional $225 to $300.  

"Can I have a friend who is very handy inspect the home?"
You are entitled to have the inspection done by anyone you'd like. We recommend that you choose a professional home inspector, someone with proven field experience and technical knowledge of structures and their various systems and appliances. The person you are considering may be very skilled, but may not be trained or experienced at professional home inspections. Home inspection is a unique skill like no other. Professional inspectors develop an instinct for problems. That instinct comes from the experience of doing a lot of home inspections. Many contractors, and other trades professionals hire a professional home inspector to inspect their homes when they purchase a home.

Will the home inspection break the deal?
Most homes are not perfect and should have some expected flaws. Buyers usually don't hesitate to follow through with the purchase of a home that has flaws as long as the problems have been identified and are repairable. Home inspections also protect the seller by providing information about defects that the seller was unaware of when he filled out his disclosure statement. 


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