Common Red Flags Often Missed by Buyers and Sellers

There are a number of issues with a home that both buyers and sellers could miss. And some of these issues could even be missed by a new or inexperienced home inspector. Just another reason why you should always choose an experienced and qualified home inspector when you are planning to buy a home. Let’s take a look.

1. Breaking down HVAC system – While there are some subtle signs inspectors can pick up on that an HVAC system is not running its best, these subtleties are often lost on home buyers and sellers. The unfortunate nature of HVAC breakdowns is that not even inspectors can catch them before they happen. The HVAC could be working fine one day and the stresses of the next day’s weather or temperature could cause a breakdown.

2. Electrical problems – Inspectors don’t have x-ray vision to look at the wiring inside the walls but they do pretty good at picking up potential problems with outlets and switches using the equipment they do have. If the inspector suspects an electrical issue, it’s best to follow their recommendations on having an electrician out to verify there are no issues.

3. Roofing issues – Any roof made from wood is going to have some inconsistencies. A qualified home inspector can tell these normal variations from major issues that could indicate a problem with the structural integrity of the home.

4. Damaged or partly blocked sewer lines – There are a number of potential home problems that might not be readily apparent and this is one of them. Inspectors check the drain lines and note material of the plumbing and often give an approximate age. They run the water and check the lines as best as possible but they are only there for 2-3 hours. Sewer line issues can often take much more time to reveal themselves than the time allotted for a typical inspection.

5. Leaks – If a house has been vacant, particularly with the water turned off, any leaks might have dried up. In some cases, it could take a few days of consistent water use for a small leak to present itself. Obviously, this is usually long after the inspector has come and gone. If possible, have the water on and running to the home for a couple of days before the inspection to give the inspector the best chance at finding leaks. Otherwise, he’ll have to rely on the condition of wood and other materials underneath cupboards and sinks to make an educated guess whether a leak might be present.

Some issues can’t be predicted by even the most experienced home inspector. However, the particular issues on our list are common red flags often missed by buyers and sellers that an inspector might be able to find. Your very best chance at catching some of these issues is with an experienced and qualified home inspector. They have the attention to subtle details to be your best advocate for catching these problems, if it’s possible to catch them before a major issue occurs.