Step 11 to Buying a Home: Schedule Your Home Inspection
Once a contract has been accepted, you will need to schedule your home inspections ASAP.
Ideally, the inspection should occur within the first 2-3 days after contract acceptance; however, during the busy spring and summer months, inspectors may be booked out up to a week or more in advance. It’s important that the home inspection occur quickly, as we will need the remaining time of the due diligence period to review the home inspection report, possibly get quotes for any repairs, and negotiate with the seller. The due diligence period is typically 10 days, which will seem to go by much more quickly because of how busy those days will be.
Plan to attend the inspection which will take approximately 2 hours for a condo and 3 to 4 hours for a single family home. Inspectors usually only work Monday through Friday (though in the busy spring and summer months, some may opt to also work weekends) and do not work evenings, so you will probably need to arrange to be off work for the inspection. Wear comfortable clothes which can get dirty as the inspector may want to show you something in the basement, in the attic, in the crawl space, etc.
There is no board of home inspection licensing in Georgia, so we recommend that you research any home inspector that you choose to use. Legally, we are not supposed to schedule the home inspection for you, so this is something you need to do. We do recommend that you hire an inspector who is a member of the Georgia Association of Home Inspectors and the American Society of Home Inspectors, as the members of those Associations have subscribed to a higher level of Standards of Practice and to a strict Code of Ethics. We are also not allowed to choose your inspectors for you, but we can tell you the ones that we have had excellent experience with, not only as REALTORS® but also as buyers ourselves. Click here to read more about how to choose and hire a home inspector.
Our favorite home inspectors are:
Mo Ghazi, Justin Erdman, or Chuck Turner
BPG Home Inspections
1 (800) 285-3001
Mark Thompson (we recommend Mark only, not other inspectors on his team)
HouseMaster Home Inspection
Once the inspection is scheduled, let us know so we can confirm that day and time will work with the seller’s REALTOR®. Most inspection companies will send you an email with a payment link prior to the inspection, and they will expect you to make payment before the day of the inspection.
In addition to the general home inspection, there may be other inspections that you want to have done. A few of these are:
- Radon inspection: Radon can be an important inspection in Georgia -- for more on radon, you should visit the EPA website, here.
- Pool inspection: If the home has its own pool and/or hot tub/spa, you should likely get an independent pool inspection.
- Termite inspection: the home may come with a termite bond, but an independent termite inspection is almost always a good idea. As the saying goes, there are two types of homes in Georgia: the ones that have had termites and the ones that are going to get them.
- Stucco inspection: If the facade/exterior of the home is synthetic stucco (also known as EIFS), a stucco inspection is a good idea.
- Mold or air quality inspection: If you or someone in your household has severe allergies or if the home inspector has alerted you to a cause for concern about fungal growth or possible air quality issues, a mold and/or air quality inspection may be warranted.
- Septic inspection: If the property is on a septic tank (rather than connected to the sewer system), it's strongly recommended that you obtain a septic inspection.
- Sewer camera inspection: If the property is attached to the city or county sewer system, this inspection involves sending a camera down the main sewer line to make sure it's in good condition with no breaks and no tree roots or other damaging entities encroaching on it.
We can help to recommend or assist you in finding these types of inspectors, and we will discuss with you in detail the possible inspection needs for the home you are purchasing. It's money well spent, as inspections now can help you to avoid huge headaches -- and even bigger repair bills -- later.