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Looking to buy a new home with great real estate value?

With over half of the American population owning a home, having one is the pinnacle of stability. It’s why you must do your best to get the most out of your deal. To do this, inspect the grounds to ensure that everything is in order.

However, you might feel confused about where to start. Worry not, this guide is the ultimate real estate agent home inspection checklist. Read on for the best home inspection checklist:

1. Grounds and Property

A home inspection checklist often starts with a close examination of the property. This means looking into how the seller keeps the grounds.

You need not focus on how the landscaping looks. Instead, check how the property influences your future home. Take a look at both the physical and structural conditions.

Start with the drainage system. To do this, check whether soggy areas and evidence of old standing water exist.

Look around and see whether the ground next to the home’s wall has the proper grade. This determines whether it can manage water flow. It also states the power it has to prevent water from puddling by the foundation.

Ascertain the driveway and walkway’s condition. Ensure they’re well-maintained and have no potential tripping hazards. After that, determine whether the planted trees are far enough from the house to avoid falling on it.

Look for past or present evidence of termite damage. It matters not whether it’s in the house’s structural beams or the woodwork surrounding it. While you’re at it, check whether the wood shows signs of rotting.

2. Foundation

The house’s structure is one of the most important things to inspect. Finding major issues on this front might cause you to stop buying the house. The associated repairs with the home’s structure are too expensive to make it worth your while.

A few strategic inspections can say a lot about the home’s structural standing. Look at the house’s foundation base and check for visible cracks or shifts. Do this for both the interior and exterior.

Don’t forget to check the sides of the house. Are they straight and level, or are they bowing? Ask the same question for the windows and doorframes.

Examine the ridge and fascia board lines for remarkable irregularities. If it’s straight and level, you have nothing to worry about.

Look at the masonry work on the foundation. Is it flaking or have broken parts? How about tree roots, are they too close to the foundation?

Checking on the interior and exterior walls let you discover hidden structural damage. It’s always better to educate yourself about home inspections to catch these hints.

3. Exterior Surfaces

The home’s exterior enables you to look for hidden damage. Some might be cosmetic, while other problems have greater underlying problems. With a qualified inspector in your area, you’ll better understand the house’s category. 

Look for enough clearance between the wooden cladding of the house and the ground. The minimum space required is 6 inches.

For houses with siding, check whether some panels are loose, cracking, or curling. If it has stucco, are there any large cracks around it?

Check for asbestos in the siding or cladding if the house is older. Dangling wiring on the home’s exterior is often a red flag. It typically is a sign that leads to further issues. 

4. Windows, Doors, and Trim

Structural damage isn’t the only thing to look for when checking windows and doors. Your checklist for home inspections must look for certain desirable qualities. It means looking at their insulation and general shape.

Examine the wood frames and trim pieces. Test whether they’re secure and have no signs of warping. If they do, it means your HVAC system will likely work harder.

Look at the joints around both window and door frames. Is their caulking thorough? The caulking must be airtight to prevent drafts from getting in.

Check each window and door screen for damage. It matters not even if a single panel of a doubled-panel window broke. Also, check if the windows have drip caps installed on top.

If the windows are old, check the glazing compound used for repairing or improving. Their condition will determine whether the house received recent renovations.

Do you own a vehicle? Check the garage door’s quality and features. Is its weatherstripping intact?

5. Roof

The roof above your head must prevent both rain and water from getting inside your home. The inspection involved to ascertain this fact can get complicated.

First, check the roof’s condition. Look for any roof patching. If you find one, examine whether the patching looks compromised.

Does the roof have composition shingles? Are they curling or cupping? Determine whether it has enough granulation particulate.

Search for broken, damaged, or missing shingles. Ask whether the seller intends to replace them before you move in.

If the house has a flat roof, look for standing water. It’s often a sign that the drainage system isn’t working as intended. 

Speaking of drainage, the gutters must be in good shape. It’s easy enough to test since you need only check whether water drains well through them. Examine the joints and ensure they have proper sealing.

6. Attic

This part of the home allows you to examine the roof’s interior. It’s a great spot if you’re looking for some problems that may appear in other parts of the house. Determine whether there are signs of past and present damage to the structure.

Look for stains under the roofing. This is often a sign of leaks and other moisture-related problems. Check for signs of a mold infestation since it’s often the result of these issues.

Insulation is also a major concern when examining the attic. The bulk of the average American home’s energy expenses comes from heating and cooling. Does the area have enough to ensure heat consistency?

At the same time, does the attic have consistent ventilation? Pay close attention to the soffit vents and gable end louvers. Check the exhaust vents to see if their insulation wrapping isn’t using asbestos.

Check for any signs of pests in the attic. Most home inspectors will only take cursory examinations since they aren’t exterminators. In most cases, they’ll look for signs of infestations and recommend the right specialists.

7. Interior Rooms

When inspecting the home’s interior, check for strange odors. It often means underlying problems like clogged pipes or pests. Look for some typical items found on a home inspection to help you decide better.

Look at the floors, walls, and ceilings. They contribute a lot when determining the home’s condition. First of all, are they straight or level?

Do they have stains from either mold or water damage? Aside from that, check for cracks since it’s a possible sign of a problematic foundation.

Does each room have enough ventilation? Look at the walls for proper insulation. Check the doors and ensure they open without struggling.

Like the attic, the interior rooms require proper ventilation and insulation.

8. Kitchen

Most home inspectors pay extra attention to kitchens. It’s the place you’ll find both water and electricity coming together. It happens while preparing food, so it’s an area where major problems must never exist.

Check for leakage in or around the sink area. After that, look for leaks or mold on the cabinet floor under it. Determine whether you have enough water pressure to supply your sink and dishwasher.

Examine the age and condition of all appliances, as well as the cabinetry and the dishwasher. Does the stove come with an exhaust fan? If so, look whether it has a vent to the outside.

9. Bathrooms

The bathroom receives the same treatment as kitchens. Most of your queries should revolve around the toilet’s condition. See whether it’s operational, regardless of whether it’s flushing or refilling water.

Examine the toilet’s installation. Give it a little push and ensure it doesn’t rock. If it does, it’s might not have enough sewage connections.

Ensure that the bathroom has enough ventilation. Its exhaust fan must end outside instead of the attic.

Look at the piping under the sink for any evidence of leaks or molds. The water fixtures must have enough water pressure for bathing, flushing, and washing.

10. Basement

Whether it’s finished or crawl space, it gives clues for the entire home’s condition. It must be dry, ventilated, and insulated.

If you see foundation components, look for stains or cracks. This typically means that the foundation has structural problems.

You can also use special tools to determine the basement’s radon levels. Ensure they comply with your state’s maximum legal levels.

Use the Real Estate Agent Home Inspection Checklist!

With this real estate agent home inspection checklist, you can see if a certain house is worth your money. If you’d rather not inspect the home on your own, get a home inspector instead.

Don’t know where to get a home inspector to help with your home inspection checklist? We’re right here! Use our contact form to schedule an inspection with our team.