What if the house I am buying fails inspection?

Buying a new home requires careful consideration and planning. Once the buyer accepts your offer and a contract is in place, you should schedule a home inspection before finalizing the sale.

This is an important step in the home-buying process, as it can uncover important information about the property that may influence your decision to buy the house.

What is a home inspection?

Generally, a home inspection takes place while the property is under contract. A qualified home inspector performs a visual evaluation of the building and provides a written report.

Legally, a home inspection is optional. It is different from an appraisal, which is generally mandatory to obtain a mortgage.

Can a house fail an inspection?

Contrary to popular belief, a property can not pass or fail an inspection.

The home inspector’s role is to inform you of structural, mechanical or safety concerns so you can make an informed buying decision. The inspector should be impartial; he or she can not tell you whether or not to buy the house or whether the price is fair.

What happens if the inspector finds a problem?

If the inspection reveals issues with the property, you can ask that the seller fix them before closing the sale, or you can negotiate the selling price to account for the issues. If all else fails, California real estate contracts generally include a contingency period during which you can withdraw from the contract without penalty. To protect your interests, you should ensure that your contract includes an inspection contingency before signing.

While not mandatory, a home inspection is an essential step to take before closing on a house.