What If The House Fails the Home Inspection?

So, you’ve been searching for a long time and you finally found that perfect house. You can picture your family moving in and are nervous, but also excited about making this house your home. You have worked with your realtor and put in an offer……and it gets accepted!  The only thing that stands in the way now is the home inspection.  So much time and effort has gone into this process up to this point, but now you’re wondering: “What if the house fails the home inspection?”


Failing a Home Inspection

You can fail a test, a work-out program, a diet, achieving a deadline at work, surely you can fail a home inspection as well? Well, here is the good news: you will never receive a failing home inspection report.  A home inspection is merely an observation of all the readily visible aspects of the home and its systems on the day of the inspection.  During your inspection, the inspector will systematically examine the home.  Union Home Inspection LLC starts at the roof and works all the way around the exterior of the house to and including the foundation and surrounding grading of the yard.  Once the exterior has been inspected, we move to the interior by starting in the attic and working our way down to the basement or crawlspace.  Along the inspection route, all the house’s systems will be examined, including electrical, plumbing, HVAC, and appliances (excluding washer and dryer).


Inspection Findings

At the end of the inspection, Union Home Inspection will complete and publish a report with our observations.  A vast majority of these observations will be general maintenance items that should be taken care of by the buyer after move-in to keep the home in tip-top shape.  (You might call these “honey-do” items.)  All homes have these ongoing maintenance items that need to be kept up with; things like painting, caulking, and clearing gutters of debris to name just a few.

A second type of finding includes items that are nearing the end of their typical life expectancy.  An example would be a gas water heater (which typically lasts 8-12 years) that is 9 years old.  This does not mean it will absolutely need to be replaced within the next three years. It is, however, brought to the buyer’s attention as something that should be taken into consideration.  The aging water heater did not fail the inspection; rather it is an item that should be added to your budget as a future expense.

Finally, there are the larger issues.  None of these items will result in a home failing the inspection either.  Even the most feared of all issues, the dreaded foundation settlement issue, will not cause a home to fail an inspection.  Nobody wants to see cracks (not all cracks are indication of serious foundation issues), water intrusion, bowing foundation walls, or other obvious settlement issues.  Whereas this may be a larger financial consideration, it is up to the tolerance of the buyer to determine if this is a concern that will bring their dream of owning this home to an end.  The same inspection finding could have different reactions from different buyers, making a threshold for failing an inspection impossible to establish.

Fortunately, the items that could fall into the category of “larger issues” are rare.  A majority of home inspection reports contain items only from the first or second category mentioned above.


It’s Just a Report of Observations

At the end of the day, an inspection report is just a list of the inspector’s findings on the day of the inspection.  No matter how concerning or numerous these may be, the home will never be considered failing inspection. (Everything in a home can be fixed – some items are just more costly than others.)  Ultimately, it’s up to the buyer to decide whether or not these items need to be addressed. Now, while it is NOT within the inspector’s purview to suggest how to fix that leaky water heater or speculate on what caused that crack in the foundation, where we do find concerns we will suggest which type of specialist to contact to evaluate and advise on the noted defects.

Union Home Inspection LLC is ready to inspect your potential property in a thorough and efficient manner.  Call/Text 859-321-6943 or visit www.unionhomeinspection.com to get a free quote and to schedule your inspection online.

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