The home purchase 'Walk through' tips

What small tips and tricks have you found that made a difference in your personal finance life? What great article did you just read? Found a great blog?

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Sr Ken
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The home purchase 'Walk through' tips

Postby Sr Ken » Sun Sep 06, 2009 6:34 am

Before occupancy your seller or builder may suggest a 'walk through' of your condo or house interior. If you are unprepared it may take 20 minutes and you will be asked to sign off your acceptance. Some costly or annoying deficiencies could turn up later.
Even if you hire an inspector (recommended for most situations), try to do a slow thorough inspection yourself beforehand. Later, during the formal 'walk through', you can point out your concerns.
If possible, have a knowledgeable friend tag along to help find flaws that you may overlook.
Take along a pad, pen, and checklist, and take lots of time.

<a href="http://www.32keys.com/axiom/tables/condotbl.html">Here's a one page crosscheck list</a> of general items to look at for each room. Nothing fancy but might supply some ideas.

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Postby OrangeBlue98 » Sat Oct 03, 2009 5:56 pm

That's a good list. What are some good questions to ask your home inspector? I'm guessing that many of us (myself included when I purchased my last house) tend to take what the inspector says in good faith. How can you maintain a good level of healthy skepticism to ensure the inspector is doing his/her job?

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Sr Ken
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Postby Sr Ken » Sun Oct 04, 2009 7:08 am

I've pretty well listed what I could think of generally. As far as the inspector and good faith goes: When I sold my house my agent hired his inspector and he did a very quick job of it. He stuck his head in the crawl space and did not go down. This is all very well for me the seller but a buyer should not rely on such a report.

Home inspections were not government regulated at the time and many were just not qualified. So hire your own competent inspector.

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Postby bendonahower » Mon Nov 02, 2009 7:21 am

I just read an older book on home inspecting called "the complete house inspection book" by Don Fredrikson. After having bought a home where the inspector missed a few things, I don't want to go that route again.

It seems to me for the price of home inspection you could have a plumber, electrician, roofer, structural engineer, and handy man each come in for an hour in addition to your own thorough investigation for the same price.

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Postby Sr Ken » Sun Dec 13, 2009 3:12 pm

Photos can come in handy for work that will be covered up if you are able to tour the ongoing construction. Pictures of all walls with the wiring and plumbing completed, but before drywall application, can be very useful if later wish to drill holes, attach objects or resolve a structural problem.

It is a permanent record of what lies hidden.
<a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_N7HrBEuDjgI/SyA0CELLY1I/AAAAAAAADNo/hM_Sz97b3aI/s1600-h/condo-wall-inspect-home.jpg"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_N7HrBEuDjgI/SyA0CELLY1I/AAAAAAAADNo/hM_Sz97b3aI/s400/condo-wall-inspect-home.jpg" alt="" id="BLOGGER_PHOTO_ID_5413383962184344402" border="0"></a>[/img]

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Postby Blueberry Scone » Mon Dec 14, 2009 9:50 am

I like the idea of bringing a friend with prior to making a big purchase like that. They can play devil's advocate for you - even if the house is structurally sound, they can point out things like "you know, that kitchen is awfully small for your family" or "the master bedroom is neat, but it's awfully far from your kids' rooms."

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Postby ChelleWeezie » Mon Dec 14, 2009 1:23 pm

Very good idea taking photos of the electical work.

Horray for master bedroom being far from kids room! LOL
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Postby dtr » Mon Dec 14, 2009 1:46 pm

+1 for the pre-drywall pics. That's an awesome idea!
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Postby Blueberry Scone » Mon Dec 14, 2009 1:54 pm

ChelleWeezie wrote:Very good idea taking photos of the electical work.

Horray for master bedroom being far from kids room! LOL


Heh. :lol: Of course, this only works when the kids are in school and older! I'm actually glad our room is so close to DD's - it makes those late-night cry fests a LOT easier to handle when you're a pretzel-throw away from her room.

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Postby ChelleWeezie » Mon Dec 14, 2009 9:58 pm

Blueberry Scone wrote:
ChelleWeezie wrote:Very good idea taking photos of the electical work.

Horray for master bedroom being far from kids room! LOL


Heh. :lol: Of course, this only works when the kids are in school and older! I'm actually glad our room is so close to DD's - it makes those late-night cry fests a LOT easier to handle when you're a pretzel-throw away from her room.



You throw pretzels at your child in the middle of the night!! Does it work? ;-)
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Sr Ken
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Postby Sr Ken » Thu Dec 17, 2009 7:23 am

I was just thinking as I popped in again, the selected photo is of my computer room. There is my phone jack and power outlet immediately in front. I am sitting there now looking into your monitor!

I'm also a bit odd at 6:24am.

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Re: The home purchase 'Walk through' tips

Postby SaxtonSells » Wed Mar 03, 2010 7:00 am

As far as finding a good home inspector, ask your friends and family who have purchased a home in the last year for a recommendation. If you dont get any leads there, ask your Realtor to provide 2 or 3 and call ALL of them. The cheapest one doesn't always mean the best... also, you want to receive a PRINTED report within 24 hours that also includes PHOTOS of any discrepancies!! And, of course, make sure they have insurance. Otherwise, you could end up (potentially) suing someone who cant ever pay up!

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Re: The home purchase 'Walk through' tips

Postby DoingHomework » Thu Mar 11, 2010 12:49 pm

SaxtonSells wrote:As far as finding a good home inspector, ask your friends and family who have purchased a home in the last year for a recommendation. If you dont get any leads there, ask your Realtor to provide 2 or 3 and call ALL of them. The cheapest one doesn't always mean the best... also, you want to receive a PRINTED report within 24 hours that also includes PHOTOS of any discrepancies!! And, of course, make sure they have insurance. Otherwise, you could end up (potentially) suing someone who cant ever pay up!

Rebecca


Good idea but why would you sue the inspector. He (or she) can only note condition, not predict the future. If something is missed (didn't notice the leaky sink), what are your damages? It is unfortunate that litigious thinking like this drives up teh cost of things for everyone.

If I hire a home inspector, which I have done, he (or she) works for me. I am ultimately responsible for judging the thoroughness of the work and deciding whether to trust it or to pay for a second inspection. To me it is exactly like hiring an employee. You don't sue them if they make a mistake, you simply get a second, third, or fourth opinion until you are satisfied. If an inspection costs $250 and you are buying a $250,000 house, why not get two independent inspections? $500 is only 0.2%.

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Re: The home purchase 'Walk through' tips

Postby SaxtonSells » Fri Mar 26, 2010 5:59 pm

DoingHomework wrote:Good idea but why would you sue the inspector. He (or she) can only note condition, not predict the future. If something is missed (didn't notice the leaky sink), what are your damages? It is unfortunate that litigious thinking like this drives up teh cost of things for everyone.

If I hire a home inspector, which I have done, he (or she) works for me. I am ultimately responsible for judging the thoroughness of the work and deciding whether to trust it or to pay for a second inspection. To me it is exactly like hiring an employee. You don't sue them if they make a mistake, you simply get a second, third, or fourth opinion until you are satisfied. If an inspection costs $250 and you are buying a $250,000 house, why not get two independent inspections? $500 is only 0.2%.


I have had two clients in the past 7 years who brought their own home inspector into the purchase process who ended up suing the home inspector (and won) because they hired him to inspect the property and point out issues with the home. He failed to tell them about an issue with the roof in one case (requiring the replacement of half the roof at the buyers expense) and in the other case, he signed off on the electrical as being "in excellent condition" when in fact it wasnt and it cost the new buyers several thousand dollars to repair. THAT's why you should make sure they are insured.

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Re: The home purchase 'Walk through' tips

Postby DoingHomework » Mon Mar 29, 2010 12:44 pm

SaxtonSells wrote:I have had two clients in the past 7 years who brought their own home inspector into the purchase process who ended up suing the home inspector (and won) because they hired him to inspect the property and point out issues with the home. He failed to tell them about an issue with the roof in one case (requiring the replacement of half the roof at the buyers expense) and in the other case, he signed off on the electrical as being "in excellent condition" when in fact it wasnt and it cost the new buyers several thousand dollars to repair. THAT's why you should make sure they are insured.


Those are unfortunate situations but I still don't understand why you think the inspector you recommend (and perhaps gives you a kickback?) would be any better. I have bought houses and have always used an inspector. The most recent time I did use the inspector recommended by a real estate agent.

The problem with using an inspector recommended by the agent is that there is a conflict of interest. The agent wants the sale to go through so there is a bias to not find major problems. An inspector you hire yourself is at least unbiased.

The nature of homes is that there can always be problems that can't be identified by even the most competent inspector. I don't doubt that what you say is true that you have had clients that have sued their inspector. But I would think this would be a very expensive proposition and very difficult to win in court. Did they actually win judgements or did they simply settle with the inspector's insurance company?


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