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When you start thinking about buying a new home, typically the only cost on your mind is the price of the home itself. A number of home buyers become overwhelmed with the amount of vendors involved in a home purchase, how much they cost and who pays for them. One of the first people you’ll hire is a home inspector. So what will a house inspection cost?

What You Get

Most companies have packages that allow you to choose what is included in your home inspection report. The basics you can look forward to include a visual inspection of accessible systems and components of the home including:

  • Structure and Foundation
  • Electrical Systems
  • Plumbing Systems
  • Roofs and Attics
  • Basements and Crawl Spaces
  • Gutters and Drainage
  • Walls, Floors and Ceilings
  • Porches and Decks
  • Property and Site

A basic inspection package may also include inspecting and testing of items such as the furnace, A/C, accessible plumbing, and built-in appliances. What would this example home inspection cost? On average, depending on the square footage of the home, around $300-$400.

Additional Price Tag

Depending on the home itself and the area you are purchasing, there are further services you may need to add to your inspection report, which will in turn, increase the house inspection cost. Additional testing may be needed for items such as:

  • Radon (Avg $466)
  • Rodent (Sometimes included, pest control vendors typically provide a free inspection)
  • Infrared scans for detecting moisture  ($150)
  • Septic ($175)
  • Propane ($50)
  • Sewer Lateral (Avg $350)

These extras are typically charged on an à la carte basis. Some of which, like radon, you can test on your own with a home kit. The others, you definitely want done by the professionals. The average inspection cost with extras can add up quickly, however, the bill that comes from not checking these items, could cost you much more

Footing the Bill 

Most times, the buyer is responsible for the home inspection cost, out of pocket, at the time of the inspection. However, with a motivated seller and the right agent, you may be able to negotiate a sellers concession or buyer commission rebate to reimburse you for  the home inspection cost. This is typical to see on a home above 2,500 square feet as the home inspection cost is typically determined by square footage. More area, more to inspect.

To Inspect, or Not to Inspect

If you’re looking at these prices, thinking to yourself, “I can skip those and save a few bucks”. Consider the cost you are risking by NOT inspecting. The above prices are in the hundred dollar range but disaster comes with not only property damage, but damage to your wallet by the thousands. If you have an inspection contingency in your contract, and problems are found that the seller is not willing to pay to have fixed, this is your chance to walk. Otherwise, when that water heater explodes a week after closing, it’s all yours. Below are the average costs of repairs you may face:

  • Sewer Main Replacement ($3,000-$5,000)
  • Rodent Extermination (Up to $2,000)
  • Septic Replacement (Up to $7,000)

Now you know what is included in your report and what to assume for a home inspection cost, but also what it may cost if you don’t. Choose wisely.

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