It appears that our housing market may be heading in a positive direction. There are still a great deal of homes on the market and the buyer has a wide range of homes from which to choose. Like all of us, buyers are looking for value. Buying a home is one of the most stressful decision we have to make. Now if you add to this process homes that have been sitting for a while, homes on foreclosure or bank owned homes, that process becomes even more uncertain.
This is where I come in. As a home inspector, it is my job to give the client (usually the buyer)a detailed evaluation of the home in question. I was recently looking at the result of a survey conducted by Harris Interactive. The survey evaluated the consumer perception of the value of a home inspection and stated, "Results indicate adults are more likely to purchase a distressed property, including foreclosures and short sales following a professional home inspection." Despite the low prices and the even lower mortgage rates, people are reluctant to buy. Many homes that I see are in need of maintenance. It has been difficult in this down economy to spend the moneys on repairs and upgrades. Foreclosures and short sales can be another challenge. Sometimes people are bitter that they are losing the home that they love. I have seen light fixtures removed and bare wires left hanging from the ceiling. Houses that have been flipped, for investment purposes my look great only to find out that short cuts have been taken that could later cause problems. New sheet rock and fresh paint can distract many from the bigger issues in the home.
"Interestingly, while homeowners are aware of the importance of a home inspection, more than one in four (28 percent) mistakenly believes the purpose of an inspection is to verify that a home complies with local building codes. More than one in ten (12 percent) confused a home inspection with an appraisal, " said the Harris Interactive study. An inspection is an evaluation of the integrity and possible safety concerns of the home. A true home inspection in my opinion is to educate the buyer about the home that they are about to own. We try to pack as much education in to the small window that we have on an inspection. It is the speed bump in the buying process that slows the buyer down to really look at the house they are about to buy. What they choose to do with that information is up to them.
"Eighty-four percent of adults believe home inspections are a necessity, not a luxury." said the study. "It is encouraging to learn having a home inspection increases home buyer confidence, " said Marvin Goldstein, President of Association of Home Inspectors (ASHI), a national organization focused on the training and education of home inspection. "We look forward to prospective buyers acting on the security brought by home inspections to breathe even more life into the recovering housing market."
There is still a lot of inventory on the market right now consisting of homes in various conditions. You can get a great deal but it is a good idea to hire a home inspector who will take the time to talk with you about your goals for the house and take the time to inspect the home carefully.
If you have any questions or are in need of a home inspection I hope that you will call me at Stonehollow. (203)304-9140. Get out there and enjoy the nice weather. I hope to see you around Newtown.
*Harris Interactive Study information taken from ASHI press release. http://www.homeinspector.org/news/details.aspx?id=111