Real Estate 101 The Home Inspection

Real Estate 101 The Home Inspection

In previous posts, I've explained what goes into the contract and more. Please check those posts for more info. 

Real Estate 101: The Home Inspection

We've found your dream home, your offer was accepted by the sellers, and you've got in touch with your lender to draw up your mortgage application. 

Per the terms of the contract, the seller has agreed to give you a period of time in which to get your home inspector in to take a look at your soon-to-be new home and give you an idea of what makes it tick. But what is the inspector looking for? And what happens when he detects a problem?

The MAR Property Inspections addendum outlines how the inspections will take place, what the obligations of the buyers and sellers are, and the timeline of responses from the parties. More on that below...

Part One: The Inspection

You have a right to and should always exercise your option to have your new home inspected. I don't think I can stress that enough. Even if you are a veteran home buyer or a contractor, it is well worth the cost of admission to have a professional, licensed inspector take a close look at your home. 

The MAR Home Inspection Addendum gives the buyers the right to have the new home inspected for:

  • Structural and Mechanical issues (major systems like your HVAC, plumbing, roof,  your appliances, etc)

  • Mold

  • Environmental (Potential Hazmats in the house like flame retardant plywood, etc)

  • Radon (an odorless, colorless gas that potentially can cause cancer.)

  • Chimney/Fireplace

  • Lead Paint (especially important if the house was built before 1978 and there are at-risk people living in the house. )

  • Additional Inspections (this could be septic, well, structural engineer investigation, or more if applicable. Sometimes the home inspector will call upon another professional to take a closer look at an area of concern. That would typically fall under this category.)

Related: Find out what the EPA has to say about Radon Gas in your home

Related: Find out what the EPA has to say about Lead Paint in your home

There is one inspection not outlined here but is a part of the MAR contract I discussed in a previous post- the Wood Boring Insect certification. Termites and other wood destroying insects are a real issue, and homes in Maryland should be inspected regularly for any intrusions/damage. Many lenders require a clean bill of health and sometimes active pest management program in place to approve the loan. Most buyers have the termite inspection done at time of the other inspections. 

Related: Find out what the Maryland Department of the Agriculture says about the wood boring pests in our state

I refer my clients to Bob Pavlik of Gold Key Inspections. Bob is not only licensed to perform inspections, but he also teaches the courses to other inspectors. On top of that, he's one of the few inspectors I've met who carries the licensed and certifications to do just about any type of inspection within your home including well flow and water quality, mold, radon, and termites. 

Related: Visit Gold Key Inspections to find out more about their services

Part Two: The Report & The Requested Repairs

After all the inspections are completed, Bob emails both the buyers and myself an in-depth report outlining all the different things he's inspected and any deficiencies and corrective actions that the seller ought to make. 

After discussing these with you, I draw up a Notice of Property Inspections itemizing the repairs you are requesting the seller to make to the home. This would be sent to the Seller with a copy of your inspection report. 

The seller has the option to:

  1. Accept the repairs as requested/written 

  2. Make some but not all repairs

  3. Refuse to make any repairs

The seller must respond to the buyer's requests within 5 calendar days. Note: Some repairs (like elevated radon mitigation) must be remediated by the seller whether they want to or not,  if no other arrangements have been made. 

Upon the receipt of the seller's response, the buyer has the right to accept the response from the seller or reject it and terminate the contract and find another house. 

Part Three: The Repairs

Assuming the seller has agreed to make repairs, the seller would then provide receipts/invoices from the various licensed contractors they hired to make the repairs. A few days before closing, the buyers and I would do our final walk-through at the home to ensure the repairs were made as the request for repairs was written.  

Until Next Time,


Steve Miller Headshot
Phone: 410-971-3050
Dated: March 1st 2017
Views: 675
About Steve: Steve Miller has been licensed to sell real estate in Maryland since 2014, but he grew up in the bus...

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