Home Inspections & Warranties Guide

By: Benjamin DeBell

A home inspection carried out by a professional inspector is an absolute necessity before you buy a property. A home inspection can tell you whether the home needs any repairs and can tell you what condition the property is in. If there are any safety concerns or any problems that can devalue the home, a professional inspector will let you know before you buy the property. If the home does need repairs, an inspector can let you know some of the costs associated with the projects.

A home inspection ultimately lets you understand the property you are buying. It is important to remember that homes come with little to no warranty. Even the low-cost appliances you buy at a store at least ensure that for a year or so you can return your purchase if you notice a problem.

With homes, however, if you notice an expensive problem after you buy, you have no recourse but to take care of it on your own dollar. Home inspections ensure that there are no such unpleasant surprises.

Home warranties are another way to protect yourself when you buy a property. These warranties cover the costs of repairs related to your plumbing system, heating and air conditioning systems and major appliances. In essence, warranties cover the costs that insurance will not cover. If you are buying a home on a budget, home warranties can protect you from unexpected expenses. Repairs to heating, plumbing, and major appliances can cost a great deal of money and wreak havoc with your budget. With warranties - which generally last about a year - you do not have to worry. Any new problems that crop up - existing problems are not covered - are paid for. Home warranties usually cost a few hundred dollars a year and each service call costs under $50, usually. If you have a new construction home or a newer home in good shape, you might decide you do not need or want a home warranty. With older homes, though, it is often a good idea since problems can crop up unexpectedly.

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