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Professional home inspections

Region: Ontario Answer # 392

In recent years, many purchasers have decided to make their offers conditional on receiving a satisfactory home inspection by a professional home inspector. This can be especially important if you are buying an older home.

Professional home inspectors will thoroughly check the home for defects, and assess what kinds of repairs may be required in upcoming years. This will include the quality of the roof, the plumbing, the insulation, and the electrical, heating, and cooling systems. If you purchase a property conditional on receiving a satisfactory home inspection and the inspection reveals problems, you will have a legal right to terminate the contract. Some purchasers who find problems will negotiate a reduction in the purchase price to cover the cost of repairs instead of cancelling the agreement, although the seller has no obligation to accept this.

To have a right to conduct a home inspection, you must include a specific written provision into the offer to purchase. In many areas of Ontario, there are commercial inspection services and home owners associations who will perform a full home inspection for you. The fees typically range from about $350 to $600, depending on your area and the type of home.

Since these services are not closely regulated, you should seek advice from your lawyer, real estate agent, or friends to ensure that you hire a reputable person or company. For more information, or to find a professional home inspectors in Ontario, contact the Ontario Association of Home Inspectors.  You can also contact the Canadian Association of Home and Property Inspectors.

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