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It is imperative that you employ a professional home inspector to protect your investment.
Buying a home is probably the most substantial investment you'll ever make. You might be able to pick out some of the defects on your own, but you'd be surprised how many you missed. A professional Chicago home inspector has a trained eye that can identify a broad range of defects and problems including:
Make an inquiry with any one of our Chicago real estate agents to locate a reputable home inspector in your area. Your realtor has most likely had prior dealings with local Chicago home inspectors. Your realtor can provide you with some recommendations. The sign of a good home inspector is one that not only notifies you of any issues, but also explains their degree of importance. The last thing you want is to get an inspection report full of minor issues when you are actually purchasing a home that's on the verge of collapse.
Before choosing your home inspector, have them provide you with a print out of a recently prepared report for a property akin to yours. If you like what you see, you just might have found your guy. Make sure you read the entire document, including the fine print. Identify any subject matter that the report will disregard and what, if any, warranties are being made.
Although the home inspection industry is still a stage of development, the State of Illinois has now made steps to protect consumers by licensing the home inspection industry. Ask the inspector about their credentials and how much experience they have in the Chicago area. Two of the nation's biggest organizations responsible for certification of professional home inspectors are the National Association of Home Inspectors (NAHI) and the American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI).
Home inspectors are not licensed architects or contractors. Their role is to provide you with an initial identification of a problem. If an inspector finds any structural problems, you may want another inspector or professional in the field to advise you before proceeding. For example if the electrical system seems faulty, seek the council of an electrician. If the foundation is found to have cracks, hire a structural engineer. It's imperative that you are completely aware of any problems with the property prior to signing your name on a contract!
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