Purchasing a home may be the largest purchase you’ll ever make. Before you sign on the dotted line, have the home checked by a professional home inspector. This inspection could cost you a few hundred dollars, but will give you peace of mind. Your Better Business offers tips for finding a legitimate, trustworthy home inspector.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, homeownership fell to the lowest point in almost 18 years to 65 percent. However, those who look to purchase a home should have an inspector check items, such as the heating and central air conditioning units, roof, walls, ceilings, foundations, etc.
Over the last year, your BBB recorded more than 3,600 inquiries locally about home inspectors. Throughout the U.S. and Canada, your BBB received more than 308,000 inquiries and more than 500 complaints about this industry.
When choosing a home inspector, your Better Business Bureau offers these tips:
• Get at least three recommendations from family, friends and your realtor. If they’re pleased with their home inspector, then most likely you’ll be too.
• Inspect the inspector. Check the inspector’s reputation, years of services, services provided, licensing, insurance and complaint history.
• Get a home inspector’s findings in writing with a detailed list of the home’s condition.
• Make sure you feel comfortable with the home inspector.
• Determine if the home inspector belongs to a professional organization like the American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI). Professional organizations like ASHI hold members to certain standards. For instance, ASHI requires members to have completed more than 250 home inspections and are required to take tests to determine the inspector’s industry knowledge.
• Don’t pay cash. Pay by check or credit card.
• Don’t be afraid to ask the home inspector if you can tag along as he or she examines the home.
• Ask questions. Don’t be afraid to inquire about something you don’t understand.
You can always get help from your BBB, such as a list of BBB Accredited home inspectors and business reviews ones you’re considering. Also, be sure to click the trust button on business reviews of companies you trust and work with. For more information, visit www.bbb.org or call (937) 222-5825 or (800) 776-5301.