Did you know that 77% of homebuyers had unexpected repair costs during their first year of ownership? With home and commercial building prices at all-time highs, costly repairs can cause an unexpected financial burden.

Whether you are buying or selling a property, building inspections are an important tool for maximizing your real estate investment in the long term.

Here are three important things to know about residential and commercial building inspections. Keep reading for a quick overview of what building inspections are and how they work.

1. How Building Inspections Work

Building inspections are an impartial evaluation of a property. From residential homes to commercial offices, inspections ensure that a building is safe to occupy.

The overall purpose of a building inspection is to verify compliance with minimum safety standards set by the Department of Building Inspection in your local area. The building inspector will ensure the property is up to code for compliance and create an inspection report.

Even though new buildings all have to pass an initial inspection, over time factors like building materials and extreme weather can impact the overall structure of a building. They are highly recommended by real estate agents and lenders.

2. What Inspectors Check For

Professional inspectors do a visual and non-invasive assessment of the property to detect any minor or major defects. They will also evaluate the condition of the property as a whole.

A residential or commercial building inspection will look the inside and outside of the property. A building inspection checklist usually includes five major systems including:

  • Electrical
  • Plumbing
  • Ventilation
  • Heating
  • Mechanical

Depending on the property’s location, geologic factors like sediment shift, sea-level rise, or saltwater may pose a larger concern. It’s best practice to confirm what will be inspected beforehand to ensure you are also getting the information you need.

Click here for more information about what building inspections cover.

3. When to Get a Building Inspection

 Building and pest inspections are critical for the well-being of those living in or around structures. It should be noted that depending on the situation, a building inspection may be required, recommended, or even waived.

New construction is always inspected. An inspector will make sure the new structure matches the approved plans and does not disrupt infrastructures like buried gas, water, or electric lines.

While waving home inspections became a popular practice in 2021, homebuyers should always invest in a building inspection. This can give buyers leverage in negotiation and ensure a sound investment.

A building inspection is also a good tool for home sellers, to ensure there are no surprises after listing a property and entering into a contract.

Why Building Inspections Are Important

Building inspections are an important tool for ensuring the long-term value of your real estate investment. Whether you are a home buyer, seller, or own property in an area prone to geologic events, a building inspection could save you time and money in the long run.

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