New Construction Home Inspections
I often hear that since there is a state required builder’s warranty for new homes in Louisiana, that it is not necessary to have new construction home inspections done when purchasing one of these properties.
WRONG! No home is perfect, even a newly built one, and it is still important to have a thorough home inspection done.
I recently had the chance to work with a terrific military couple relocating to New Orleans. After a whirlwind search, we found the perfect house for them. Brand new construction that was just the right size, in just the right neighborhood, with the perfect finishes and upgrades they were hoping for. I recommended that although the builder would be willing to work from a punch list it was in their best interests to hire a professional home inspector to be sure that everything was done correctly. Boy, am I glad they followed my advice.
Most home buyers and their agents don’t have the expertise or the knowledge of structure, mechanical items and building codes to determine whether or not a home was built properly and it’s easy to overlook things that are not obvious defects.
Just a few of the items that the home inspector uncovered:
- Toilets that were loose and not properly secured to the floor
- A leak in the new HVAC unit that caused sheetrock damage and mildew to begin forming
- Loose shower heads
- Bathroom fans that were improperly vented into the attic instead of the exterior
- Improperly installed insulation in the attic
- Scratches on the granite counter top
Armed with the inspection report, we were able to have all of the issues resolved before closing, giving my buyers peace of mind that they were moving into the best possible home in the best possible condition.
This is not meant to be negative about any builder. The particular one we were dealing with is a reputable businessman and has built and sold many homes in the area. But, he cannot possibly personally inspect every detail in every home as they are constructed and subcontractors (and their subcontractors) often don’t take the same personal pride in their work that the actual builder does. Given how responsive he was to the buyers requests, I’m sure that he has a long history of satisfied customers and I wouldn’t hesitate to write an offer on another home he built.
The bottom line is that spending just a few hundred dollars up front for a professional home inspection can save you plenty of aggravation, time spent waiting for warranty service and even possibly money, after you have settled in and the builder has moved on to other properties.
Are you in the market for a newly constructed home? Be sure to use a professional, local REALTOR to represent YOUR interests.
Here’s the disclaimer part: The opinions expressed here are strictly those of the author, but you are free to share yours in the comments. All information is deemed reliable but not guaranteed.