FHA home loans require an appraisal in order to insure the property meets minimum FHA requirements. The appraisal also helps the lender set the loan amount based on the adjusted value of the home. Some borrowers are tempted to skip the optional home inspection process and simply go with the FHA appraisal.
This is a bad idea because doing so basically results in buying a home and making a large investment without knowing the true nature of the property’s condition. There are some questions you can ask yourself to help better understand why a home inspection is needed; learning the answers to these questions can definitely change your mind about the temptation to skip a home inspection.
How Does The Buyer Know If There Is A Roof Problem?
Can you tell whether the roof is in good condition or will need replacing soon? Can you tell just by looking? Can you tell how old your roof is by looking? The age and condition of the roof may be a make-or-break issue for some borrowers who do not relish the idea of paying to have the roof replaced soon after purchasing the home.
The problem is, most buyers are not trained home inspectors and won’t be able to tell if a roof is aging, in need of repairs or replacement, etc. A home inspector can tell you much more about a roof’s condition than the appraisal will-the FHA appraiser is not required to step onto the roof or be an expert in roofing issues.
How Does The Buyer Know If There Are Foundation Problems?
A big crack in the foundation might be a giveaway that a home has problems. But a door that sticks could just as easily be a warning sign of foundation issues, too. To be fair, sticking doors are not always an indication that a foundation is in trouble, but that is listed as a symptom to watch out for. Do you know what the implications of a house with foundation trouble are when it comes to future repair bills?
A leaning chimney, bowing walls, and sagging floors in the crawlspace may all be indications that a property is experiencing foundation trouble. A home inspector will know to look for these things and many more warning signs the buyer may not be aware of.
Even Brand New Homes May Have Problems
Did you know that brand new homes can experience issues, too? It’s not just the purchase of existing construction property that can get tricky for a borrower who isn’t sure they want to pay for a home inspection. New home issues include flooding basements, improperly balanced heating and air conditioning systems, moisture between the window panes and more. Some of these issues are minor at first but may get worse over time.
A home inspection is the only way to catch certain problems that may be evident to a trained inspector but not the buyer (or even the seller). Purchasing a home with an FHA mortgage without paying for the home inspection is not recommended; the FHA and HUD have even published a document for home buyers titled, For Your Protection, Get A Home Inspection.
This document advises borrowers on the importance of having a property inspected before you buy but also reminds borrowers that the FHA can do nothing for FHA borrowers who choose to pass up the home inspection process and later discover defects or flaws in the home.