Inspection FAQ

Whether you’re buying or selling a home or planning to purchase a commercial building, many questions may come to mind when you are finally ready to schedule an inspection of the property.

From finding a qualified inspector to gaining a better understanding about the systems that make up your property, the team at Alert Inspection Services has compiled a list of answers to your most frequently asked questions.

Our trusted inspectors believe everyone should have peace of mind when it comes to one of their largest investments.

For more information about home inspections from the experts at Alert Inspection Services, please contact us here or call us directly at 616.662.6990.

Please click on any of the questions below to learn more:

Why do I need a home inspection?

If you are planning to purchase or sell your home, then receiving a quality home inspection should be at the top of your to-do list. Receiving a home inspection before making your next purchase can save you the time and headache of investing in a house that has a lot of costly problems.

Similarly, if you are planning to sell your home, receiving the stamp of approval from an experienced home inspector can give you a leg up in the housing market, as home buyers want a place they can feel safe in.

While those are the main two reasons to receive a home inspection, there are other services home inspectors offer that all homeowners can benefit from. This can include both radon testing and insect inspections.

Do you have any certifications?

All of our inspectors are certified by and members of the American Society of Home Inspectors.

Can I tag along during the inspection?

Of course! Clients are welcome to tag along during the inspection. However, if you are unable to, we do provide detailed reports that we can help walk you through as well.

How can my home fail an inspection?

Houses do not actually fail home inspections. Instead, the report is to help provide insight on the condition of your home so that you can decide if it’s a property worth investing in or something you should pass on.

What are you looking for during the home inspection?

We are primarily looking for serious defects. Serious can be defined as safety defects or as defects that are expensive to correct. We also point out minor defects as well as maintenance items and provide a lot of general information regarding ages of systems and system life expectancies. Your home inspection report will be a valuable homeowner reference guide for years to come.

How long does a typical home inspection take?

 It could take from 30 – 60 minutes for a walk through inspection to an average of 2.5 – 3.5 hours for a full home inspection. This is the time spent at the house with additional time spent on report writing. While it is not set in stone, there are many factors that can impact how long an inspection will take. This can include if the customer is present and has questions (This is always welcome! Remember, inspection time is your time in the home!). The size, age and condition also play an important role in how long an inspection takes.

It is important to remember that inspections are designed to evaluate and report the condition of the home and we will take whatever time is needed to both inspect and report so that you have the information you need to make an informed decision.

What will my home or commercial inspection cover?

Our ASHI, (American Society of Home Inspectors), Certified Inspectors will look at the: Structure, Exterior, Roof, Plumbing, Electrical, Heating and AC, Interior, Insulation and Ventilation, Built in Kitchen Appliances. We will exceed the standards set by ASHI. On commercial inspections we will follow the ASTM Commercial Property Inspection Standards.

How long does it take to receive my inspection report?

Inspection reports are computer-generated and emailed for electronic access the same day.

When should I schedule my inspection?

Whether you are buying, selling or simply want an update on your home’s condition, we recommend scheduling an inspection as soon as possible.

Do you have contacts to help with any issues found?

Yes, we offer a list of trusted contractors to help with anything that arises during your home inspection.

If I am buying a new home, do I still need an inspection?

The age of your home does not matter — all houses should receive a home inspection. Even if your home is new, there may be defects, that if not corrected, could lead to serious problems over time. New homes have their own set of concerns that can be equally as serious as anything found in older homes. It is always better to have a home inspection so you can rest assured that you know the condition of your new home.

Can I get a home inspection even if I’m not selling or buying?

Absolutely! We recommend getting a home inspection every 3-5 years to get an update on your home’s condition and to prevent any major problems from occurring.

What is radon?

Radon is a naturally-occuring gas that you cannot see or taste. It emanates from the soil beneath your home and is the leading cause of lung cancer in non-smokers. Learn more about our radon testing here.

Why is a radon test important?

Radon testing is important because radon is the leading cause of lung cancer in non-smokers and the only way to know if your home has elevated levels is to have it tested. If left untreated, radon can have damaging effects on anyone who enters and spends time within your structure. Learn more about our radon testing here.

Can it be fixed if my home has radon?

While only detectable by radon testing, elevated radon levels can typically be easily lowered to well below the action level. Using a continuous radon monitoring device, our experienced inspectors will check your home’s radon levels to make sure they are acceptable — or establish a radon remediation plan, should the levels be higher than normal. Learn more about our radon testing here.

Do I need a wood destroying insect inspection?

Wood destroying insects can cause serious damage to your home’s structure so it is important to inspect for infestation of these damaging insects. Several house loans require that you receive an insect inspection before purchasing. Also, if you are considering selling your home, a thorough insect inspection can give you a leg up in the housing market. Learn more about our wood destroying insect inspection services here.

What are commercial and multi-unit inspections?

Commercial and multi-unit inspections are designed to provide business owners with important information on the condition of the property in question so that they can make an informed decision about the potential expenses, (both immediate and short term), associated with the property. Examples of commercial and multi-unit properties include multifamily dwellings, office buildings and retail establishments. Learn more about our commercial and multi-unit inspections here.