Why should I get a Home Inspection for New Construction?
We often get asked if a person buying a new construction house should get a home inspection. Our response is always a definite yes. As home inspectors people would be amazed at what is found on new construction homes. Even the best and most reputable builders can make mistakes and forget to complete different tasks.
Finding errors or incomplete work in a new construction home is the most obvious reason to get a home inspection but here are a few reasons that many people don’t think about when they are buying new construction.
Many people buying new construction believe that city building officials are looking out for the buyers and ensuring that the new home is up to par. The truth is that city building officials are there to make sure the bare minimum standards are followed and their inspections often take less than 10 minutes. There are even stories of city building officials doing “drive by inspections” where the builder meets the city building inspector out in the street with a clip board and the official signs off on the inspection, never gets out of their car. City building officials likely have all of the best intentions in the world but they have time and budget constraints and sometimes those constraints are not reasonable for one person, so they are forced to make compromises. That compromise may have been made on your home.
Your builder likely offers a 1 year warranty on your home, if you don’t find an issue within that one year it will be difficult to get the builder to repair or complete that issue.
- Does the average person go into their attic within the first year of buying a home (or ever) and if they do, do they know what they are looking for? Your home inspector should go in the attic and know what he/she is looking for.
- Does the average person open their electrical panel in the first year of buying a home (or ever) and if they do, do they know what they are looking for? Your home inspector should open the electrical panel and he/she will know what they are looking for.
Another reason that people seldom think of when deciding whether or not to get a home inspection on a new construction home is the fact that they will sell that home one day. Whether selling that home is five years or twenty five years into the future, odds are the future buyers are going to want to get a home inspection because the house will no longer be a new construction home. The items that could have been uncovered during a new construction home inspection will now be uncovered during a home inspection when the original buyers are trying to sell the home. Now there is no builder involved and any repair costs are likely to come out of the original buyers (future sellers) pocket.
Whether building a new construction home or purchasing an existing home buyers are likely strapped for cash with down payments, escrow accounts to pay into, appraisals, moving expenses, maybe even new furniture. The last thing a seller wants to worry about is paying for repairs that could have been covered under the builders warranty when they first bought the home.
If you are buying a new construction home, a home inspection makes sense from any way that you look at it. Don’t rely on city building official who are constrained by budgets and time. Don’t hope that any issues “become apparent” before the builders warranty expires. Do not get stuck in a situation where you need to have a bunch of issues fixed before your house is marketable when you decide to sell. Get a home inspection on your new construction home, get any issues fixed now and Don’t Buy It Until We Certify It!