Updated: Jun 8
Right after you execute a contract to purchase a home, you will want to have some home inspections done. Most real estate contracts allow buyers five to ten days to have inspections done. Many people who get VA home loans think that they automatically get home inspections when the VA home loan inspections are done. This is not true. A VA home loan appraiser does inspect certain parts of the house. For example, a VA home loan appraiser will check to be sure the furnace is the correct size to heat the entire home, and also check for other minimum standards. This VA home loan inspection is really an appraisal. It is performed by the VA home loan lender. The lender wants to be sure that the home is worth the price on the contract. There are a few home inspections that you, the buyer, want to have performed on your behalf.
Whole House Inspection
A whole house inspection should be done by a licensed and insured home inspector. The inspector will look at the home from top to bottom, or from roof to basement or foundation. A home inspector will inspect the exterior components of the home such as the roof, siding, driveway, and the like. He will take an in-depth look at all the systems in the home such as the electrical system, heating and air conditioning system, plumbing system and more. He will check for safety hazards as well.
Radon is a cancer-causing gas. You should have a radon inspection performed to be sure your soon-to-be new home has less than the acceptable level of radon. According to the epa.gov website, an acceptable level of radon is less than 4.0 picocuries (pCi/L.)
It's also a wise idea to have a mold inspector inspect the home. Mold grows in dark places and is not easily seen with the naked eye. It can grow in attics, basements, and even behind walls. Mold can cause allergy-like symptoms and even major, life-threatening symptoms.
Another recommended inspection is a pest inspection. A pest inspector will look for wood-boring insects that can cause damage to the home.
Lead-Based Paint Inspection
If the home was built before 1978, you should get a lead-based paint inspection. Builders used to use lead-based paint in homes before that time. Lead exposure can cause all sorts of health issues, even death.
Nowadays, more and more home buyers are having sewer inspections. A sewer company will come out and put a camera through the sewer lines from the house to the city sewer. This will tell you if there is damage to the sewer lines, such as cracks, tree roots, and the like.
The best VA home loan lenders and real estate agents should recommend these inspections. It's better to know the condition of the home before you close on it, so you can ask the seller to make repairs. Home repairs can be very costly.