Home inspections are just as important and recommended in North Lake Tahoe as they are elsewhere. An inspector will evaluate visible parts and systems in your home and will inform you of any potential and current issues you may face.
What does a home inspection cover?
A home inspection will provide you with a lot of important information about the prospective home.
Exterior: An exterior evaluation includes noting the grade of the property, condition of structure including foundation, stairs, gutters, roof, chimney. Inspectors will not inspect vegetation, ponds, decorative features or portions of retaining walls that are not visible.
Interior: Structural evaluation walls, stairs, ceiling, and floors. Inspectors will access attics and view crawl spaces to determine components, signs of water damage or structural decay.
Systems: plumbing, heating, cooling and electrical is evaluated and materials are identified.
Appliances: Inspector will test appliances such as ovens, fridges, dishwashers, garbage disposal and ventilation fans. They will not test other appliances that are not built-in, microwaves, thermostats, timers or the self-cleaning function on an oven.
What does a home inspection NOT usually cover?
A home inspection will not cover anything out of sight, such as plumbing and wiring inside the walls, the exterior foundation below ground level or behind finished walls, systems the inspector cannot access due to personal belongings. If systems or appliances are not connected or not in working order the inspector will be unable to test it. Inspections do not cover add-ons to the home such as security systems, hot tubs, pools, or satellite dishes. Most do not cover things like termite inspections or radon detection…although some inspectors are specially certified to do these specialized tasks.
Are there additional inspections I should request?
You may want to have additional tests such as water, radon, septic or termite. Sometimes the home inspector can be qualified to do these additional tests, typically at an additional cost, or you may have to hire someone else. During the home inspection the inspector may see something questionable and suggest you bring in an expert in that area for a more in-depth look at the area of concern.
Things to keep in mind…
Remember your Realtor sees many home inspections each year and can often recommend what inspections are important based on your future properties location and amenities.
There is no pass or fail when it comes to home inspections, it is information to help you plan your future expenses, and in some circumstances, renegotiate the contract to include repairs.
If you have a home warrantee, the company may require a copy of the inspection before paying repairs. They want to ensure the broken component was in working order when the property was purchased.
The cost of the home inspection varies based on the number and types of inspections required. Typically, they start at around $250 but are a worthwhile investment. In some cases, buyers will waive their right to an inspection but they do so with the understanding that they are buying the property “as is” and are assuming all risk should there be any serious issues with the structure.