When buying a home, how do you know what you’re getting?
Most people probably only think of one or two questions to ask a home
inspector: “How much is your fee?” and “When can you be there?” But these
only scratch the surface.
Here’s a list of suggested questions you might ask:
• What types of licenses do you hold?
• What kind of training do you have?
• Do you belong to a professional inspectors’ association?
• How long have you been licensed in Texas?
• Are you a full-time home inspector?
• How much do you charge?
• Do you also perform repairs? (If the answer is yes, that may indicate a
conflict of interest)
• What will the inspection include? (Get specifics. It should include the
electrical, heating, and central air-conditioning systems; interior plumbing;
visible insulation; roof; walls; ceilings; floors; windows; doors; foundation;
basement; and the visible structure of the house.)
• Do you inspect gas lines, swimming pools, spas, septic systems, and
wells? (You can identify other atypical systems or items.) Do you charge
extra for these?
• Do you charge extra based on the size of the home? Multiple AC units?
• How much would you charge if I ask for a reinspection after repairs are
• Will you supply a written report? (The inspector should.)
• Can I attend the inspection? (The home inspection is an opportunity for
you to learn about your new home and ask questions. If the inspector says
no, find another inspector.)
• Do you go up on the roof to inspect it?
• How long will the inspection typically take? (Anything less than two hours
is not long enough for a thorough inspection.)
• Can I call you with questions that come up later?
• Can you give me names and phone numbers of three people for whom
you’ve inspected homes recently?
The inspector may not inspect swimming pools, wells, septic tanks, and other
systems and items, and many inspectors will not conduct environmental tests
or wood-destroying insect inspections. You will likely need to arrange for
these inspections separately.
You can find a blank copy of the standard inspector report form at
www.trec.state.tx.us to give you an idea of what may or may not be covered in
This information is brought to you by a proud member of the Texas Association of REALTORS®. Whenever you buy, sell, or lease real estate, make sure your agent is a REALTOR®.