I started this blog to increase my interaction with people considering a home inspection. This effort ties into my larger engagement plan which includes building social media connections. Recently, one simple “follow” resulted in my receiving a simple question in return: What advice would I give a first-time home buyer? The first thing that comes to my mind is to establish an advisory team.
You should create a custom and comprehensive, home purchase advisory team early in your home search process. Choosing a winning team will help you move to your end goal sooner and smoother. Of course, a Realtor and a lender always “make the team” without much thought or encouragement. After all, don’t you need them? You certainly do, but don’t stop there. Who else will you need?
I strongly suggest you add both an insurance agent and a certified home inspector to your team as early as possible. Select these key team members well before you finalize your home selection. This gives you the time needed to research, identify, and carefully select these key service providers to ensure your chosen team members will best meet your needs.
Questions Along the Way
You will surely develop questions related to their expertise as you make progress in your home search. Why not have these advisors pre-selected and available to quickly give you the answers you require? Once you finalize your home selection, simply contact them to schedule their final delivery of services. Your “shopping” process for these key team members has already been done.
Now, if you find that a chosen team member does not respond favorably to your questions during your home search, you can replace them along the way. You want to work with team members willing to help you understand their role in your home buying process. Building a relationship with them before submitting your purchase offer allows you to discern whether they are the best fit for you.
The Inspection Report
I’m not suggesting that your home inspector work for free. However, engaging this key advisor during your search will help you understand how your inspector works, what they will look for, and what will be included in your inspection report. Simple questions during your home search should never pose a problem for them.
Note that your home inspection report is not a “report card,” and should never look like one. A competent inspector will never pass or fail a home – they will leave that decision to you and your sales advisor, your Realtor. The inspector’s role is to discern the condition of your intended home, and to report on it. If you cannot walk along while the inspection is being conducted, make sure you speak directly with your inspector after reviewing your report. Ask specific questions, and expect specific answers in return.
Share Your Thoughts
After you review your report and discuss it with your inspector, you should be able to finalize your purchase decision. This is a good time to rate your experience with this key advisor. Great inspectors deserve feedback to confirm how well they meet their clients’ needs. Good inspectors need the same to improve their service. Be candid in your evaluation, and offer to submit at least one online review to the rating venue of their choice. Your participation in helping us improve our industry is well appreciated.