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The Importance of a Home Inspection

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Jen Copeland


I'm a mom, wife, interior designer, realtor, stager, lover of people, homes, art and stinky cheese.

I'm from Southwest Michigan. I pride myself in that most of my clients become friends and refer me to others they care about. That is the highest compliment I could receive. 

Quality is in the details. This is true in design and real estate. 

Congratulations, they accepted your offer! Let the excitement, planning, loan application and investigation period begin. Within 10 days of an accepted offer on a property, buyers have the right to an investigation period. This is the time when buyers will have reasonable, scheduled access to the property to inspect the home, property and its systems etc. 

Per our local Buy & Sell Agreement, buyers are advised to carefully evaluate the home. Most buyers seek the help of a home inspector for this task and rely on their findings to dictate the overall condition of the home; in some cases their findings dictate the viability of the deal. In the State of Michigan, there is not a license required for home inspectors, but a certification is available. 

Each inspector has their own method of inspecting the home, but typically have a checklist they follow for each property during the 2-3 hour investigation. Inspection of the roof, hvac, exposed plumbing and electrical panel are aspects of the home that will be included. The majority of inspectors use software to aid them in writing the inspection report and typically include photos, ratings, and estimated costs to repair any deficiencies that are found. 

The report that is generated is shared with the buyers within a day or so. This report is reviewed by the buyers and their agent to determine if any repairs, price concessions or reductions are going to be asked of the sellers. It is highly recommended that repair requests are limited to structural and safety issues, avoiding issues that are merely cosmetic.  All requests must be submitted to the sellers within the 10 day period as well. The sellers will have 5 days to respond to the requests.

Costs vary per inspector, but typically range from $300-$500. Adding a pest inspection and radon results to your inspection will add to the cost. An inspector’s job is to point out issues that may need extra or immediate attention.  Additional investigations by a licensed contractor may also be necessary as a result of their inspection. 


All homes have issues, and all require maintenance. A home inspection during the investigation period is an excellent way to have peace of mind that the home is in good condition, and those issues that may need immediate attention are not surprises after you get the keys. 

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