Why should Californians get home inspections before buying?

Often seen as an able to be foregone expense, there are several reasons why California home buyers should not skip the inspection.

According to a Forbes report, California home prices have seen an ongoing increase over the last three years, rising 33 percent in San Francisco. With these increases and the state's ever-growing cost of living, people often look for ways to cut back on their home buying expenses. One such expense that many choose to skip is the home inspection. However, there are several reasons why it is important for potential buyers to have the properties they are considering examined by a trained professional before signing on the dotted line.

Locate unseen problems

Not all home problems are visible on the surface, so buyers may not see significant troubles during typical real estate showings. Issues such as plumbing leaks and moisture in walls can be just as troublesome and costly to repair as those including a cracked foundation or aged roofing. During their checks, home inspectors may use a variety of tools and methods to check a property from the foundation to the roof. Identifying any problems with a residential property before they have finalized their purchases may help people avoid some purchase and sales disputes.

Unbiased analysis

When it comes to buying and selling homes, nearly everyone involved in the process has their own motivations. While there may be some overlap, each party may be looking out for his or her interests before even their obligations to provide a service. Home inspectors, however, do not tend to have a vested interest in the properties they analyze. Therefore, home buyers may count on them to provide an honest, unbiased opinion about the condition and integrity of the home.

Identify future issues

Many problems that occur in homes over time, like water damage, start small and may not be readily noticeable until they have become significant issues. In addition to checking for visible and below-the-surface issues during home inspections, inspectors also assess the condition of the home's individual parts and systems. Rather than just identifying whether there is any damage to the heating, plumbing, or cooling components in a house, for example, a home inspector may indicate how much wear is on those systems and when people might expect to have to replace them.

Negotiation advantage

Sometimes buyers and sellers go back and forth with one another, countering each other's offers. A home that has a host of underlying issues can be made to look as though it is move-in ready, giving sellers the upper hand. Through a home inspection, however, buyers are able to ascertain the true condition of a property. They may use that information in their negotiations to seek a price reduction or to push for the repairs to be made before the sale is finalized.

Working with a legal representative

The buying and selling of residential real estate in California may seem a straightforward process at first glance. However, there are numerous complexities involved that may affect whether a sale and purchase ultimately go through. Therefore, it may benefit buyers and sellers alike to obtain legal assistance. An attorney may help them understand their requirements and options, look out for their interests and guide them through the process.