Engage The Services Of A Quality Home Inspector
Home inspections provide an objective opinion of a home’s condition. It is recommended that any home purchase, even a new home, get an inspection. Home inspectors provide the objective third party opinion. For a buyer, it provides a more objective and realistic evaluation and helps balance the emotional appeal of a property. Typically, home inspectors evaluate a property during the first five to seven days of a completed contract during what is called the option or inspection period. A typical Austin area home inspection should cost between $300 to $600 and will take a few hours to perform.
Inspections Provide An Objective Opinion Of A Home’s Condition
The inspection allows the buyers an opportunity to reveal any major problems prior to closing. Texas law does not require home inspections, but it is always a good idea to invest in that unbiased expert opinion for such an important decision as a new home purchase. Sellers, can also invest in a pre-sale home inspection as part of selling process to assure buyers that there are no significant defects and to help sell their home in a timely manner. Home inspection is now a regulated industry, so make sure you hire a licensed inspector.
It’s always a good idea to get a home inspection:
- It’s a good idea for homebuyers to attend and observe the inspection
with the inspector.
- It is a conflict of interest for Inspectors to recommend or bid on repair work.
- Inspections check the condition of the home at the time of inspection.
- Some special home features are not included in a basic inspection such
as swimming pools, in-ground sprinklers, gazebos, etc.
- Licensed home Inspectors are very thorough but are not guaranteed to
catch every possible problem in a home.
- Even new homes should be inspected. New homes are not always built to
the industry standards.
A licensed inspector will:
- Share useful information such as the location of the shut off water or
- Exterior framing and trim are solid and secure.
- Concrete driveways and walkways appear in good condition
- Check for radon and other harmful gases.
- Describe what they are checking and what they have found.
- Visible electrical connections are up to code.
- Visible foundation is not settling.
- Interior walls are straight without bowing or settling.
- Provide a written report of their observations.
- Stairway railings are sturdy and secure.
- Signs of standing water in the yard.
Questions to ask a home inspector:
- Does the company stand behind its report (give a guarantee)?
- How many real estate companies does the company service too?
- Does the company have Error and Omissions insurance?
- How long have they been performing home inspections?
- Will the company provide a written and signed report?
Popular Buyer Questions
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Does it cost money to use a Realtor?
In Texas, the homeseller typically pays the commission of the agent that is listing the home for sale as well as the commission of the agent that is representing the buyer. Commission payments to the real estate agents on both sides are typically paid out of the proceeds of the sale at closing and are typically 3% of the sale price for each agent.
What are the upfront costs of buying a home?
Buyers will typically incur some costs as part of the purchase. Those costs most commonly include:
EARNEST MONEY: Usually about 1% of the sales price.
OPTION MONEY: The option fee is typically $500-$1000 for an average priced home.
INSPECTION COSTS: For a standard inspection of an average priced single family home, a buyer can expect to pay $500 – $1,000.
LENDER COSTS & FEES: These fees are based on the Lender’s APR (Annual Percentage Rate), The APR, reflects the true and total cost of the loan. It factors in the interest rate plus any upfront costs and fees that are charged by the lender to obtain that rate or to close the loan, such as points, fees, or other costs associated with the loan.
DOWN PAYMENT: This is the portion of the loan that you pay at closing, while the rest of the loan is typically paid over time through a mortgage. Down payments are usually a percentages of the mortgage in the range of 5%, 10%, 20%, 30% down, etc).
What’s the difference between tax, appraised, and market value?
MARKET VALUE: The FMV (Fair Market Value) is simply the agreed upon price between a willing buyer and seller, both of whom are reasonably knowledgeable about the property in question.
APPRAISED VALUE: The valuation determined by a professional appraiser during the mortgage origination process.
ASSESSED TAX VALUE: This is the value assessment performed by the county tax assessor’s office for tax purposes.
Will I get a better deal working directly with the listing agent?
The listing agent works for the seller and they are obligated to work in the seller’s best interest. Therefore, there is a benefit for the buyer to have their own Agent and there is no cost to the buyer for the service.