Even after your offer is accepted, there are several steps before you actually own the condo. One of those steps is the home inspection. It’s something you arrange and it’s often treated as perfunctory or unimportant. In fact, though, the process should be taken seriously.

Your offer was made and accepted on good faith. You really liked the place and, to your eye, the walls looked good, the ceiling looked good, and you assumed that the appliances worked and the heating system was functional. But you’re not in the building maintenance business – you don’t actually know that everything is as it should be. Before you fork over your money, you need a professional to check all the appliances, the wiring, the utilities, the foundation, ceiling, roof, floors, and so on, to make sure they’re in the condition they should be in. This is why you hire a home inspector.

The inspection will usually take around three hours. The inspector will be examining the exterior of the building, and then, on the inside, turning on every faucet and light, opening every cabinet door, checking everything there is to check, and making notations on whether they work as they should. The inspector will work quickly and efficiently – he or she has done this hundreds of times before and knows the ins and outs. To you, the process may be overwhelming.

If you have questions about the place that you wanted addressed specifically, have them written down and be ready to ask them. Also, if there’s something you don’t know – like how a heating system works, and how you should operate the one you’re about to buy – let the inspector know, we will be able to educate you on all your questions.