3 Legal Requirements Every Home Inspector Must Follow

3 Legal Requirements Every Home Inspector Must Follow

Selling a home can be emotional. It can be the start of something fresh which is exciting but truthfully, it can also be very frustrating. Part of this process involves what many sellers have come to know as the dreaded home inspection. Everyone wants their house to pass the test and hope they maintained the condition of their home.

The nagging feeling of “what if” persists in many cases and that’s why it’s important to acquaint yourself with the legal requirements that every home inspector is subjected to.

Legalities

When buying a home one of the requirements in getting a loan improved is a home inspection. Many real estate agents recommend inspectors based on their experience working with them and while this can be fine, it’s always recommended to use the professional that you feel comfortable with.

There are some inspectors out there that are fraudulent in their practices. Even if they agree to do a good job, issues pop up at a later date after the home is purchased leaving little-to-no recourse for the homeowner. That’s why it’s imperative to check with the home inspector on a couple things beforehand.

Here are some things to consider:

  • All home inspectors are required to be a full member in good standing of a national not-for-profit home inspection association (HIA) or they must be supervised by someone who is in good standing and a member.
  • Home inspectors must comply with a code of conduct and attend continuing professional education classes as a requirement of their condition of membership with the HIA.
  • Home inspectors in many states are required to have insurance in the amount of no less than $300,00 in case of any errors, omissions, and general liability coverage.

Do the Research

When checking with any home inspector, ask questions and lots of them. Never be shy about inquiring about the things they’ll be checking for. After all, this is your potential new home that is being discussed and the last thing anyone wants is an unexpected surprise or repair after closing on the house. If it doesn’t feel right when talking with the home inspector, ask to see records, paperwork, certifications.

A Big Decision

Choosing an inspector isn’t that easy. Speak to a couple and then decide on a candidate. This is where asking family members and friends to help with the decision comes in handy. If the inspection comes back with multiple problems, it can affect the price, and ultimately prevent the house from selling at all.

Most homeowners cannot repair a home they have inspected within the past 12 months. This means that if they have done repair work on the home you are looking at as a contractor, they cannot be the inspector that also looks at the home. This is something else to look at. Some contractors are also home inspectors so check on this as well. It is best to use an inspector that does not offer repairs to avoid a conflict of interest.

Bittersweet

The Attorney General says that it’s always wise to check with the local and state offices regarding home inspectors and what they are legally required to do. This can give you peace of mind and allow the focus of the entire process remain on getting to the final step of being handed the keys to the home once and for all. When having the inspection done, it never hurts to walk with the inspector. This allows you to have a better understanding of what they’re looking for and if there are areas of the home being missed, you can bring it up before the inspector finalizes the report.

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