Buying A Home
The process can be stressful.  A home inspection is supposed to give you peace of mind, but often has the opposite effect.  You will be asked to absorb a lot of information in a short time.  This often includes a written report, photographs, environmental reports and what the inspector himself says during the inspection.  All this combined with the seller's disclosure and what you notice yourself makes the experience even more overwhelming.  What should you do? 
 
Relax. Most of your inspection will be maintenance recommendations, life expectancies and minor imperfections. These are nice to know about. However, the issues that really matter will fall into three categories: 
 
1.    Major defects. An example of this would be a structural failure. 
2.    Things that lead to major defects. A small roof-flashing leak, for example. 
3.    Safety hazards, such as an exposed, live buss bar at the electric panel. 
Anything in these categories should be addressed. Often a serious problem can be corrected inexpensively to protect both life and property.
 
Most sellers are honest and are often surprised to learn of defects uncovered during an inspection. Realize that sellers are under no obligation to repair everything mentioned in the report.  No home is perfect.  Keep things in perspective. Do not kill your deal over things that do not matter. It is inappropriate to demand that a seller address deferred maintenance, conditions already listed on the seller's disclosure or nit-picky items. 
 

What Does a Typical Home Inspection Cover?


•    roof, vents, flashings and trim; 

•    gutters and downspouts; 
•    skylight, chimney and other roof penetrations; 
•    decks, stoops, porches, walkways and railings; 
•    eaves, soffit and fascia; 
•    grading and drainage; 
•    basement, foundation and crawlspace; 
•    water penetration and foundation movement; 
•    heating systems; 
•    cooling systems; 
•    main water shut-off valves; 
•    water heating system; 
•    interior plumbing fixtures and faucets; 
•    drainage sump pumps with accessible floats; 
•    electrical service line and meter box; 
•    main disconnect and service amperage; 
•    electrical panels, breakers and fuses; 
•    grounding and bonding; 
•    GFCIs and AFCIs; 
•    fireplace damper door and hearth; 
•    insulation and ventilation; 
•    garage doors, safety sensors and openers; 
•    and much more.