Nicole, A home inspection is a very important thing when buying a new home. Price should be the very last thing you should be considering when choosing a inspector and inspection company.
You need to find a ASHI or NACHI certified inspector. Simply Google it in Georgia and the inspectors will pop up for you.
Does Ga, require a license to do inspections? If so ask for it.
Once you find one you need to vet them out. You need to ask some very important questions.
How long have they been doing inspections?
What type of home do they specialize in? Do not tell them what your buying. Because they will always specialize in that type of home.
What type of report format do they use. Narrative, or check list?
A check list report is fine for a very new home, or for someone who understands homes very well and has gone through this process a few times. The Narrative report will provide you with much more information that can help guide you though the house.
Ask them if you can follow them around. If they say no or say something like they will do the inspection then sit you down and talk to you about what they found. Steer clear of them.
A good inspector should want you to follow them around. They should be pointing out everything in a room that they are looking at. They should be teaching you about your heating and cooling equipment. They should be explaining to you about your kitchen appliances and should be testing everything. The laundry should be run, Dryer tested, Oven tested, dishwasher run, The microwave should be at least checked for fan and perhaps warm a glass of water up.
You should ask for a sample report to look at. It should be written so you understand exactly what is going on. Not something like functional, or not functional.
The report should always
Tell you what they are looking at. The cement sidewalk.
Tell you where this item is. In the front of the home,
Tell you what is going on with it. has cracks due to settlement
Tells you the outcome and should be patched
Tells you why. to prevent additional damage
Should tell you if this repair is needs to be done right away, or needs to be done prior to the sale. This repair should be completed prior to taking ownership of the home. Or monitor etc.
A normal home three bed, two bath, basement/ crawl, garage and exterior should take around three hours.
The inspector should be also doing a wood destroying inspection. While this can be done by the home inspector. Ideally a separate inspection company that does only termites, ants carpenter bees etc should do this. the home inspector has enough things to do and looking for insects does not need to be part of this. Many work with other companies and will come with them as part of the inspection package.
Radon. A radon test should be performed.
Well, septic inspection. If your the home your buying has this. Then these inspections should take place. In our state NJ depending on where you live and what county. Some have requirements that the seller pay for this and others say its the buyers job. But if its required. Get an independent inspection done.
in addition. I always suggested that the well and septic inspection be done after the home inspection. This ticks off the agents as they want one stop shopping, but if everyone comes at the same time, and the inspector finds some real bad structural issue with the home that you know your going to break the deal or know the seller will not fix. If they are all there, you pay for their services. By having them come after the home inspection and radon and termite at same time. You will know if you need the additional evaluations performed.
Remember your buying the house and paying for it. Do not let the agent tell you or them that she has another place to be and keeps asking how much longer. They should always plan at least three hours plus for a good home inspection.
Bring a camera, a ruler and lots of paper and pens to document room sizes etc. This is normally the last time you will be able to get into the house and its a good time while the inspector it taking notes for you to measure and do this. Do not let anyone distract you from the task at hand. If the agent keeps following you around and interrupting the inspector and you taking. Ask him or her to sit in the other room until the inspection is done. If you do not understand something, ask the inspector. If you see something that you feel is not quite right. Ask, You would be amazed on how much you really know, you just need to ask about it to confirm your feelings.
Do not ask the inspector if he or she would buy the house. They should not give you an answer.
A good place for a referral is from your real estate attorney. He or she has seen lots of inspection reports. Tell them what kind you are looking for and who would they recommend. Remember they are looking out for your best interest and if they can understand a good report so can you.
Not sure what they get down south but a 2,000 square foot home costs around $375, plus insect, $75, Radon $75-$150 But it could be much less down your way.
Most important. Keep the parents and kids at home. Regardless if they are good or not. They do not belong at the home and they can get into the way by distracting you or your better half while your doing the inspection with the home inspector.
Good luck! Got questions? Feel free to contact me anytime. I have performed over 10,000 of these goodies and can tell you all sorts of things.
try kudzu.com, nariatlanta.org or angieslist.com
If you're still in need of an inspection we would be happy to help!
For more information on our company you can visit us at: PropertyInspectorsofAtlanta.com
or just give us a call! 770-912-0012