The next phase in purchasing a home is inspections.There are two types of inspections. One is the responsibility of the buyer. The other is the towns inspection for the Certificate of Occupancy.
The Certificate of Occupancy (CO) Inspection.
The town CO inspection is the responsibility of the seller. Do not confuse the town’s inspection with the one you should be getting. Your inspection will be much more complete. Many towns only require working smoke and carbon monoxide detectors and a fire extinguisher. However, some towns perform a very complete inspection of the property.
Your contract states that you must perform your inspections within 14 days of the end of attorney review. You must also furnish a report to the sellers attorney within that 14 day time frame. Your inspector must be licensed by the state.
A competent inspection will examine the following:
Roof, siding, foundation, doors and windows. Doors and windows should open, stay open, close and lock. The glass should not have broken seals or cracks.
Air conditioning and heating systems. Hot water heater.
All appliances included in the sale.
The entire electrical system, receptacles, switches and electrical panel.
All plumbing fixtures – sinks, toilets and hose bibs.
If these apply:
Underground oil tank
Patios and decks
Septic Systems and wells need inspections also, these should be done by specialists
Some inspection companies also perform a wood destroying insect inspection and certification. You may need a separate company for this. If you are getting a mortgage, you will need to supply the certification to them.
Homes built before 1978 may have lead paint inside. If your new home was built before 1978, consider having a test for the presence of lead paint.
In some areas of New Jersey, radon gas is present. Discuss radon gas with your inspector to decide if you need to test.
When the inspection is complete, a copy will be sent to you, your Realtor and your attorney. Discuss any inspection issues with your attorney. Decide which, if any, issues exist that you want the seller to address.
Next chapter – Survey and Title Insurance
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