So you are thinking about getting your home appraised…Wait. Maybe it’s a home inspection? Now you are doubting yourself because the difference is tricky! Luckily, One Avenue Inspection is here to guide you through the Arizona real estate process with a short guide to home inspections versus home appraisals. Home appraisers and inspectors each play very important functions in setting the stage for real estate sales. Both generate reports that can be used to prevent the buyer from overpaying, but their roles are far from identical.
According to the Appraisal Institute, the role of the home appraiser is to provide a professional opinion, usually an estimate of market value, to be used in making real estate decisions. Typically, appraisers are employed by lenders to estimate the value of real estate involved in a loan transaction. An appraiser hired by a lender works in the best interest of their client, the lender. Appraisers look at general items in your home rather than specifics such as the age and size of the home, construction materials, the condition of the roof and the home’s exterior, plumbing and appliances, the number of bedrooms, bathrooms and closets, type of energy used to heat and cool the home, energy conservation features, such as solar panels, the condition of fences and decks, building code compliance, the potential for expansion of expanding the home, and even the quality of the schools in the district.
A home inspection is an objective visual examination of the physical structure and systems of a house. Home inspectors are usually employed by the prospective homebuyer. A home inspector hired by a buyer works in the best interest of their client, the homebuyer. Inspectors look at more specific items in your home rather than general. A home inspector climbs onto the roof, pokes at the foundation, and crawls into attic space looking for water condensation or penetration. All the electrical components are examined to ensure they fit and are operating safely. Conductors, grounding equipment, and distribution panels are tested for efficient operation. Doors, floors, stairways, counters, cabinetry, and the number of windows are all cited on the inspection report along with notes on any items that don’t function as they should. This also includes testing of all interior appliances that are built-in or included in the purchase contract.
Turn Key Tip 1: A thorough home inspection covers more than 1,000 items, everything from the foundation to roof and takes two to three hours depending on the size of the property. The report should reflect the condition of about 400 items.
Turn Key Tip 2: Get a copy of the inspector’s checklist and make sure it covers all of the areas you think are important. Ask the inspector to walk you through the home to point out any problems uncovered by the inspection. Ask for recommendations about how to address any defects they identify. These will be important when you return to the seller to bargain for a lower price. A seller who is faced with a negative inspection report will often reduce the price of the home by the amount required to correct the problems.
With this new information you can be equipped to handle part of the pressures of buying a new home. The inspection process can be one of the most important aspects of buying a home because of the intricacies involved with seen and, more importantly, unseen details of your potential new home. With these helpful tips, One Avenue Inspection is bringing you closer to owning your new Phoenix area home!