If you plan on buying a house anytime soon, there is one contingency you should always include on the purchase offer – a home inspection contingency. This contingency protects you and is vital for any house deal. As you prepare to buy a house, here are three things to understand about a home inspection.
What a home inspection contingency means
Putting a home inspection contingency on a purchase offer means that you are agreeing to buy the house for the terms you listed on the agreement, but that you have the right to get the house inspected before you go through with the purchase of it. This contingency also gives you the legal basis to back out of buying the house if the house does not measure up to the condition the seller has told you the house is in. In other words, you have the right to know the exact condition of the entire house before you buy it, and you can back out if the house has problems that you did not know about when you made the offer to buy it.
What the home inspection can reveal
A home inspection will usually reveal some problems, but there are times when the problems are very minor and normal. In other cases, the problems a house has may be major. Some examples of major problems found during home inspections include roof damage, furnace problems, water damage, and mold.
What your options are if it reveals problems
If you added a home inspection contingency to your purchase offer, there are several options you could choose if you find out there are problems with the house. The first option is to choose a different house to buy, and buyers will typically do this if the problems are too big to fix, such as mold problems. A second option you have is to ask the seller to fix the problems that the inspector discovered. If the seller agrees, he or she will pay for all the needed repairs. The third option is to take the house as-is but ask the seller to accept a lower price for the house in exchange for you completing all the needed repairs.
Adding a home inspection contingency is an important step to take when writing up an offer to buy a house. To learn more about this contingency and others, ask a local real estate agent for help.