A Boston Area Home Inspection Should Be Mandatory

Every now and again, we get a buyer who says to us, “Why do we need to get a Boston area home inspection?” Or “Why is it so important to get a Boston area home inspection?” Or “Why should we get a home inspection if we’re buying a new home?”

The temptation is there for skipping a Boston area home inspection and saving the few hundred dollars the inspection will cost in order to buy a piece of furniture or new curtains instead.

Our advice? Don’t Do It!

We have other articles on the importance of getting a Boston area home inspection in the Boston Home Inspection section of articles to your right under Boston Real Estate Categories.
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Buying Flipped Boston Area Houses – Don’t Get Ripped Off

Many flipped Boston area houses are houses that have gone through foreclosure or a short sale, have been purchased by an investor, some cosmetic repairs made, then put back on the market for unsuspecting home buyers to fall into.

If you’re thinking about looking at flipped Boston area houses as an option to find a good deal, there are some things you need to do and look for in order not to get ripped off in the process.

Being in the business of seeing and showing a lot of homes, we can testify to the fact that a vast majority of flipped Boston area houses are just plain shoddy homes that have been covered with a layer of makeup. Always, always, always — get a home inspection on any home you plan to purchase, especially flipped Boston area houses, which tend to be more risky. The price of a home inspection is small compared to the price you might end up paying for some major home repair. Do yourself a favor, don’t skip the home inspection.

For more Boston area home inspection tips, visit the home inspection section of our website to your right. And be sure to Find us on Facebook, and Follow Us on Twitter.

Foundation Problems When Selling Boston Area Homes

Selling Boston area homes isn’t cut and dry these days. With fewer numbers of homes on the market, buyers are easily scared off if they encounter problems that may negatively impact resale value. Among the many negative issues that need to be addressed in order to make a house more marketable in the future are foundation problems. They rank near the top of the list.

If you’re among those “very few” currently selling Boston area homes right now, you should have already made sure that the property is competitive with similar properties in the area. A little dampness in the basement or a small drywall crack are flaws that a potential buyer may be willing to overlook, but a cracked or bowed foundation wall will be a major red flag. Since the sale of most Boston area homes are contingent on a satisfactory home inspection, foundation problems are very likely to stop a home sale dead in its tracks.

Some Foundation Problems Are Obvious

When selling Boston area homes, foundation problems should be addressed before the home even goes on the market.Some foundation problems are obvious. Boston area homes with cracks, leaning chimneys and bowing basement walls, for example. But there are other symptoms that may signal a settling or shifting foundation. Windows or doors can be racked by a shifting foundation and become difficult to open and close. Drywall cracks that extend from the corners of windows and doors are another telltale sign.

As surprising as it seems, newer Boston area homes may be just as likely to have foundation problems as older ones.

Home Improvements vs. Home Repairs

In today’s economy, it’s understandable for homeowners to put off home improvements until they feel more financially secure. But it’s important to make a distinction between basic “feel-good” improvements (like painting a room or installing shelving) and repairs that correct safety issues or prevent a problem from getting worse. Fixing damaged foundations in Boston area homes definitely falls into the “must-do” category.

It’s risky to put off fixing a damaged foundation. If a crack starts to enlarge or a wall starts to buckle, you’re seeing a failure that is probably going to get worse. The longer you wait, the more extensive the problem becomes and the more expensive the repair is going to be.

Specialty Contractors For Foundation Problems

The good news about foundation problems is that most of them can be corrected, as long as the contractor has the training, tools and materials to do so. Many local remodeling contractors only temporarily fix cosmetic problems, but are unable to permanently solve the problem. Do your homework if you have serious foundation problems and be sure to hire an expert who is trained in doing the job right.

For other things to be aware of regarding home inspections, check out our other articles pertaining to Boston Home Inspections under the Boston Real Estate Categories to your right.

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Boston Home Inspection Critical When Buying Real Estate

go along when your Boston area home inspection is being done to learn more about the houseYou found the perfect Boston area home, your offer was accepted by the seller, and now it is Boston area home inspection time!

Home inspections are very important during the home buying process. Your certified home inspector is quite skilled at discovering underlying problems with a structure.

If at all possible, make sure you are present with the inspector when he or she is going over the house. Inspectors are great at explaining all of the little features of the house, especially when it comes to the mechanical, electrical, and plumbing systems.

Learn Where Things Are During Your Boston Area Home Inspection

In addition to any problems your inspector may discover, he or she will also be able to show you where your water shut off valves are located. Knowing where your shut off valves are located is extremely important in case one of your plumbing fixtures, or pipes, suddenly sprouts a leak. For example, if your dishwasher ever decides to start flooding your floor you will know exactly where to go, and what to do, to turn the water off and minimize the water damage.

If your inspector does find a problem with the home you are buying, they usually have several ideas on how to correct the situation. If there are only a few problems and they are relatively minor, you may elect to correct the problems yourself after you move in. If your inspector finds a major problem, you may need to discuss this at length with your real estate agent. Regardless of whether any items are minor or major, your home inspector will give you a detailed report of all of the problems, and potential problems, they discovered during the home inspection process.

What Happens After Your Boston Area Home Inspection

A major problem with the home is usually addressed in a repair addendum. The repair addendum is simply a list of defects that were discovered during the inspection process. The addendum is written up by the buyers’ real estate agent and signed by the buyer. The repair addendum is then delivered to the seller’s real estate agent who delivers and discusses the addendum with the seller.

At this point, the buyer waits for a brief time, usually a day or two, while the seller considers whether to make the requested repairs, refuse to make the requested repairs, or offer money off of the price of the Boston area home, if the buyer will accept the house as it is. In most cases you can come to some type of arrangement with the seller regarding any problems you discovered in the house.

Occasionally, there is some sort of problem with the house that seems overwhelming to both the buyer and the seller.  If no mutually agreeable compromise can be reached, the buyer usually has the option of walking away from the house and ending the contract of sale. Hopefully, this does not happen to you.

Buying a Boston area house is an exciting adventure and a huge financial investment. Unless there is some underlying circumstance that prevents it, always get a home inspection of any improved real estate you are considering buying. The price of a home inspection is miniscule when compared to the price of a new roof, or some other major home repair. Do yourself a favor, don’t skip the home inspection.

For more Boston home inspection tips, visit the home inspection section of our website to your right. And be sure to Find us on Facebook, and Follow Us on Twitter.

Avoid Nightmares, Get a Boston Area Home Inspection

Take our advice: If you want to avoid nightmares and unknown problems, get a Boston area home inspection before you buy any home.

Boa constrictor found during a Boston area home inspectionFrom the 15-foot boa constrictor holed up in the wall, to a house ready to collapse in a stiff wind, to electrical wiring that bursts into flames at the flip of a switch, Boston area home inspections have turned up about everything. And those horror stories could be yours if you don’t have the home you’re considering inspected before you buy.

Getting A Boston Area Home Inspection Could Save You Thousands!

While some buyers might balk because of the extra cost, spending a few hundred dollars to get a Boston area home inspection could save you thousands in the long run.

In most home-purchase offers, it’s customary to include a clause making the transaction contingent on the findings of a home inspection. If the inspection reveals real problems, what happens next depends on the contract.

The seller may cover repair costs; the buyer and seller might split costs; the seller might credit the buyer money to make repairs; or the seller might reduce the price. If the buyer and seller can’t come to terms, the buyer can walk away from the agreement.

As any Boston area home inspector will point out, what you don’t know CAN hurt you.

A typical Boston area home inspection takes several hours and looks at things such as the heating and air-conditioning systems, plumbing, electrical systems and the roof. Specialty inspectors can check for mold, radon gas and energy efficiency. If repairs are needed, hire a licensed contractor. That way, there’s a paper trail that the work has been done. And you should have the home reinspected to make sure the repairs were done properly.

When working with Buyer’s Choice Realty, we ALWAYS make any offer contingent on a satisfactory home inspection. If you work with an agent who works for the seller, be very aware of this all-important part of the home buying process. Make sure they don’t encourage you to by-pass getting a Boston area home inspection on the home you’re considering. If they do, run away from the home as fast as you can.

For more Boston area home buying tips, visit our Boston home buying tips section of this website.

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