Hiring a home inspector can be one of the most important decisions you make during the home buying process. A good home inspector can uncover potential problems in and around the home that weren’t originally disclosed. Uncovering these issues before you close on your new home can save you thousands in expensive repairs as well as headaches.
I’ve been selling homes in the Vaughan area for over 20 years and having a good home inspector on your side is an important part of the home buying process.
I recently sat down with George Mino of GWM Home Inspections to get answers to some common questions home buyers ask when it comes to the home inspection process. George is a home inspector in Newmarket, and has inspected hundreds of homes in and around the GTA. You can find out more about George at the end of the this interview.
1- When buying a home, it’s important to know about potential issues with the home before you sign anything. At what point should a home buyer seek out a qualified home inspector? How much notice is typically needed when hiring a home inspector?
When the buyer makes a formal offer , in the offer is written a Waiver for a home inspection. The notice is any where from 1 to 5 days however this depends on how many days are given to have this done. Usually 5 days but this time period is often shortened due to other issues that have to be addressed and often my notice is 2 to 3 days
2- Do home inspectors need any certifications in Ontario? What certifications should someone ask for when contacting a home inspector?
Home inspectors are not regulated by the Ontario Government. A qualified Home Inspector should belong to a recognized association , Have formal training , (Community College) , served an apprenticeship and in my opinion have a construction background. I carry my certifications with me for clients and agents to see.
3- You’ve conducted hundreds of inspections in the GTA, what are some common problems you find during the course of an inspection?
The top 5 Problems i find are: Dirty furnace filters , GFCI’s not working , foundation cracks , grading and drainage issues and electrical panel double tapping.(2 circuits in one circuit breaker}
4- Are there any areas of the home that are of particular concern when a problem is found there? What should the home buyer do at this point?
The roof is important as is the foundation and water ingress. Usually these issues are discussed with the seller and negotiations take place.
5- Once a home inspection is completed, what happens next?
After the completion of the inspection the buyer can now make a educated decision to buy or not. They can work with their real estate agent and decide their next course of action.
6- How long does a home inspection typically last?
Most average homes, up to 3000 sq. ft. , require 3 to 3.5 hours to inspect. this includes writing the report and presenting it. Usually the seller is not on hand during the inspection. The buyers agent or his representative must be there. And as previously noted the buyer should attend.
7- Any parting advice for the first time home buyer?
All home buyers and especially First time buyers should attend the inspection and ask questions. As the inspection progresses the inspector and client will establish a dialogue that will educate the buyer in how the house works and at the completion present the client with a precise report.
George Mino is a Newmarket based home inspector that provides home inspections, maintenance inspections, as well as mold testing services throughout the GTA. You can read George’s blog, which uncovers common problems found during a home inspection.