A home inspection is a noninvasive examination on the condition of the home performed by a certified or licensed inspector. Components of the home that are inspected include the exterior, interior, foundation, structural elements, windows and doors, appliances, electrical, plumbing, HVAC, and roof. Pools, docks, sea walls, detached portions of the home, in-law suites, wood destroying organisms, radon, lead paint, asbestos, water testing, and other aspects may be inspected at an additional cost but are not consider within the scope of a basic home inspection.
A home inspection is visual assessment. This means that inspectors cannot see through walls, predict the life expectancy of components or appliances, or inspect areas that are inaccessible. Home inspectors evaluate the condition of the home at the time of the inspection. This means inspectors do not determine the cause of defects or predict future conditions. Additionally, inspections are limited in scope because of time restrictions. However, experienced inspectors will develop a system to be as thorough and efficient as time allows. A home inspector should discuss expectations and procedures prior to the inspection to help the client understand the process.
It is important to contact the home inspector and discuss what is included in your home inspection. If you require additional inspections or testing, such as radon or asbestos, your home inspector may be able to offer these services at an additional fee. Talking with your inspector prior to the inspection will best prepare you and the inspector to ensure you are receiving the correct services to produce the most accurate report.