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Home Inspection During Escrow Explained

by Parker R. Brody

Once your offer has been accepted, escrow can be opened. There are many things to do during this period, usually between 30-60 business days.

Buyers require a home inspection. Although you are not required to have a home inspection done, it is highly recommended to provide valuable information about the house’s structure and functioning systems. You have the right to cancel your contract if the inspection reveals any issues. However, you must notify the seller in writing. The seller can also make repairs and pay for them before escrow closes. You can ask the seller to accept or reject your request. Or, they may give you credit for the repairs.

You can schedule the inspection within the first week-fifteen day of the acceptance date to allow time for repairs negotiations with the seller. The inspection will be completed before closing escrow.

What does the Home Inspector do?

The Home Inspector in Rainier will provide a detailed report that includes information about the construction, condition of appliances and any indoor or outdoor system defects. If he finds anything that requires additional inspection or repair, the inspector will note it.

What is Included in the Inspection?

The inspector inspects the home for obvious defects.

  • Exterior Building: Siding, roof gutters and downspouts. Foundation, driveway, fences, patios.
  • Landscaping: Sprinklers, property grade, and drainage
  • Ceilings and walls
  • Doors and Windows
  • Insulation and attic
  • Fireplaces and chimneys
  • Electrical System: Panel, switches, outlets
  • Heating and Air Conditioning: registers, ducts
  • Plumbing System: Pressure, supply lines and valves. Waste lines. Hose bibs. Water heaters. Bath fixtures.
  • Appliances: sinks, dishwasher, refrigerator, oven, stove
  • Garage door and garage door opener

Six additional inspections that a buyer can order

The standard inspection does not cover all the tests that homeowners may need. These are six additional things to keep in mind:

  1. Pest Inspection- Many buyers request that the sellers pay for this inspection. If the homeowner refuses to pay, a buyer might still be willing to pay for the inspection. The inspector will inspect the property for termites and other wood-destroying insects and report to the seller, buyer, and agents. The inspection should take place within the first week.
  2. Asbestos Inspection – You may need to have an asbestos inspection on an older house you consider buying. Asbestosis is a well-known health hazard that can cause severe lung conditions such as cancer.
  3. Gasses and Chemicals – An inspector can inspect for chemicals and gasses, including Radon, Formaldehyde and Methane gas. In their report, they will suggest ways to eliminate the contaminants.
  4. Mold Inspection – A mold inspection will look for dampness in your home’s building materials, such as drywall, insulation around windows, and bathroom cabinets.
  5. Pool and Spa Inspection – You will need to inspect any pool or spa you purchase. These are expensive items to fix.
  6. Environmental Inspection- Your lender might require you to get flood insurance or geologic/soil reports if you live in an area that is susceptible to flooding, earthquakes or other natural disasters. For more information, speak to your agent or lender. An inspector might recommend a specialist to inspect your chimney, roof, and fireplace. Geo may be recommended if the property is located on a cliff or near a waterway.

Timeline for Typical Inspections

Week 1:

* Home inspection

* Agent Visual Inspection – The buyer’s agent inspects the property and visually inspects it. They then write up their findings and sign them by the sellers and buyers.

* Appraisal- Required by your lender and paid by you, as the buyer.

* All other inspections ordered or required by the lender

Week 3:

* Inspections can be done at this time.

* The repairs have been completed, and the loan approval and confirmation have been confirmed.

* You, the buyer, will waive all contingencies.

* Repairs will be scheduled if agreed upon.

Week 4:

* All repairs completed

* A final walk-through will be conducted to confirm that all repairs have been completed and that the home is still in its original condition.

Your agent should discuss your inspection strategy as the market’s tolerance for repairs and inspections can differ greatly.

Congratulations on your new home!

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