When you schedule a home inspection it’s important that both you and your inspector have the same understanding and expectations regarding the service being provided. Pre-inspection Agreements are standard in the Home Inspection industry and are used to provide written documentation of the details of what, where, how, and when of the inspection so that everyone is on the same page.
- After scheduling a home inspection, you will receive a Pre-Inspection Agreement that needs to be read and signed before the inspection starts. The first information contained in the Agreement confirms the address of the property to be inspected, the inspection date and time, your contact information, and the agreed-upon fee(s) for the inspection. Obviously, it’s important for you to verify all that information is correct so that your inspector shows up at the place, date, and time you’re expecting them and to avoid “surprises” regarding payment terms.
- By signing your Pre-inspection Agreement, you’re confirming that the inspector has permission to enter the property to fully perform their inspection, without interruption. If the inspector shows up to the property and can’t gain access or can’t inspect certain areas because of construction, renovations, pets, or other activities, the inspection will be limited and may not reveal important issues. Rescheduling a follow-up inspection to complete those missed areas will involve extra cost, and more importantly, time that could delay or derail the home purchase timeline.
- Your Pre-inspection Agreement provides a detailed description of the “Scope of Services” so there is no misunderstanding about what is or is not included in the inspection process. It also describes circumstances related to the property that could potentially limit the ability of the inspector to complete their inspection, giving you (or the property owner) the opportunity to address those before the scheduled inspection date. Again, a limited inspection will not be as useful to you, will potentially add cost or time to the inspection process, or miss critical defects that could cost you more money in the future.
Your home sale or purchase is potentially the biggest single financial transaction you’ll make, so taking a few minutes to read, understand and agree to the information contained in your Pre-inspection Agreement can provide significant benefits. As with any aspect of our process, we always encourage our clients to ask questions about any information contained in the Agreement or their final inspection report.