Do I really need a Home Inspection for a brand new home? This is one of the most frequently asked questions I receive. Before I went into the home inspection business, I never thought a new construction home would need to be inspected, after all, it’s BRAND NEW. On top of that, the builder couldn’t possibly miss anything, especially with all the permits needed and the building inspector giving the final ok. After I inspected my first new construction home, I was amazed at how many defects existed in the home. Till this day, I have yet to inspect a new home without finding some serious defects/mistakes. So to answer the question, Do I really need a Home Inspection on a brand new home? Absolutely! To help you understand why I believe a Home Inspection is needed on a new construction home, I’ve written five reasons, all based on true, personal experiences. My hope is that this will give you a better understanding of the intended purpose and value of a Home Inspection, and that is to protect your investment and to protect your family.
1. New construction homes have all sorts of problems. Building a home is very complex. It involves many different subcontractors and their employees each working on a different system of the house, usually without regard to the other house systems. With all of the construction going on simultaneously, it is nearly impossible for the builder to carefully check all phases of construction. Even the best builders will likely miss something. Here are some examples of some defects I have found in new construction homes:
Broken roof trusses
Ducts completely unattached to the heating and air conditioning unit
Missing insulation in homes being sold as Energy Star energy-efficient homes
Organic growth on crawl space wood framing and insulation
Raised roof shingles allowing water to penetrate underneath the shingles
Floor girders and joists not being supported properly
and one of the most dangerous defects I have found in a new construction home is a gas furnace with the exhaust gases terminating inside of the home. If this wasn’t caught, it could have potentially killed whomever was living in the home. This is not an act of negligence on the builder's behalf, It’s just difficult for the builder to check every system and every item installed by every contractor in a home, especially when multiple homes are being built simultaneously.
2. A municipal building inspection and a home inspection is not the same thing. The purpose of a municipal building inspection is to check for compliance with applicable building codes; however, building codes are minimum standards and factors beyond their control prevent these inspections from being enough.
3. Repairs aren’t negotiable. The Builder is obligated to fix everything wrong with the home. When buying an older home, the Home Inspection report is often used as a negotiation tool for the buyer’s agent, or buyer his/her-self. However, the seller is not required to fix everything, or anything for that matter. It is all negotiable. With a new home, however, if the builder wants to sell the home, he/she is inclined to fix everything wrong with the home prior to the sale.
4. Defects can be repaired before serious damage is done. Many defects in older homes, such as floor movement, wall cracks, etc… are direct results of defects that could have been prevented had they been fixed during initial construction. Having these defects repaired before costly damage can occur later on can save you thousands of dollars.
5. It matters when you sell your home. When you decide to sell your formerly new home, the buyer will likely get a home inspection. Deficiencies that date back to the original construction will be discovered even if you never knew they existed. At this point, it’s too late to get the builder involved. You now own these problems.
The Good News is, hiring a licensed professional Home Inspector at AG Home Inspections to inspect your new home can pay for itself many times over both monetarily and with peace of mind. You can feel confident that problems are identified and corrected early before you purchase your new home.
If you purchased a new home within the last 11 months and didn’t get a Home Inspection, there is still Good News for you. You can get a “1-Year Builder’s Warranty Inspection.” Don’t wait, schedule your inspection today before your warranty runs out and get the peace of mind you need and deserve.