The Real Estate Encyclopedia
How Do I Hire An Inspector?
Category - Home Buying Questions - Buying Disclosure & Inspection FAQ's

Your real estate agent should be able to refer you to a qualified inspector.  If you would rather find the inspector yourself, you can look in the Yellow Pages under "Building inspectors" or "Home inspectors," or visit the ASHI (American Society of Home Inspectors) Web site, which has a search page that allows you to type in your ZIP code and get a list of certified inspectors in your area.

The buyer should accompany the inspector as he/she looks at the house. They can explain any problems or issues they find give maintenance tips and answer questions.  Although the inspector will draft an in-depth report of the findings, it is easiest for the buyer to understand if he/she attends the inspection personally. 

In rare cases, the inspector may miss something.  If this should happen, your options will probably be spelled out in the contract. Some inspectors have a clause in the contract that limits their liability to the cost of the inspection. Some contracts have arbitration clauses that limit your ability to file a lawsuit. Some inspectors carry errors and omissions insurance, "which is kind of like malpractice insurance in case something major is missed.

ASHI is the nation's largest home-inspector trade association. To become a member, an inspector has to pass a test, have performed at least 250 inspections and pass another test that covers standards of practice and the code of ethics. Members are required to take 20 hours of continuing education annually to keep abreast of new materials, building standards, technologies and inspection techniques.  In addition to ASHI, the National Association of Home Inspectors (NAHI) has similar standards and their website also allows you to search for local inspectors.


Home Buying Questions - Buying Disclosure & Inspection FAQ's
Home Buying Questions - General Home Buying FAQ's
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