What is a Property Inspection and Why is it Important?

A property inspection is a professional, objective, visual evaluation of the current condition of the property and its major systems, and does not include cosmetic improvements. It is important to understand that a property inspection is not necessarily a guarantee of any kind, nor a municipal code inspection. Property inspection reports may also indicate areas of preventative maintenance for the buyer’s information. These maintenance items are not typically a reason to renegotiate contract terms.

There is No Perfect Home

Buyers and sellers involved in the transaction should be aware that existing houses are less than perfect. The inspector may report that some items are defective or not working properly. These may or may not be major concerns. In most instances where there is a major concern, the buyer and seller may negotiate the cost of the correction. Where there are items that are not a major concern, most buyers will very likely take care of the correction. Talk to your REALTOR® about what and what not to expect.

The Inspector’s Role

The inspector’s role is to inspect the condition of the property and the home’s major systems. The inspector checks that systems are installed properly, functioning as intended, and operating in a safe manner. The inspector may advise the buyer of the potential life of certain major systems in the home, and may make recommendations so that the buyer may budget for maintenance or replacement. The inspector should not be expected to give an opinion regarding the market value of the home.

Types of Property Structures




Hazardous conditions

Pest infestation and/or damage

Environmental – lead, radon

dining area