Buying a home is the largest purchase most people will make in their lifetime. It goes without saying that you need to perform your due diligence and make sue the home you are buying is everything you expect it to be. Your real estate professional should put your offer in with inspection contingencies so you can have several tests and an inspection performed over the following week.
1. Home Inspection: According to Angie's List, a standard home inspection will cost between $375 and $550, depending on what part of the country you live in and the square footage of your potential new home. While you may be watching your bottom line before this major purchase, the expense of a home inspection will be worth every penny. A home inspector will examine every aspect of your home, from the roof to the foundation, including all mechanical systems. You will receive a report of everything that is wrong with the house as well as a general idea of when major items, like the furnace, will need to be replaced. This is not to use as a repair list to send back to the current owners, but rather as a tool for you in your decision-making process.
2. Pest Inspection: If you purchase a home using FHA-secured funds, you must pay for a pest inspection. This is, however, a good idea for everyone. While a regular home inspector gives a cursory glance for evidence of bugs and other pests, he or she has a lot to examine over the course of two short hours. Avoid future headaches and hire a specialist to perform a pest inspection on your potential purchase. They are more experienced in this field and delve deeper into possible problems.
3. Radon Mitigation Test: Radon is the killer most people have never heard anything about. As the second leading cause of lung cancer in the United States, radon gas kills 21,000 people every year. This odorless gas creeps up into the basements of homes in pockets throughout the United States, slowly poisoning its occupants. If it is common in your area, order a radon test in which a machine is set up in the home's to monitor the radon levels over a 24-hour period. If the radon level comes up as high, the standard procedure is to request that the sellers install a radon mitigation system before closing at their expense. Such a system will reduce the radon to EPA-acceptable levels.