Sometimes when someone is getting ready to buy or sell a home, they enter into the market with a few common misunderstanding about the process.

One of these misunderstandings centers around the difference between a home inspection and an appraisal.

It’s a misunderstanding that can be very costly for both a buyer and a seller of real estate, and it’s a mistake that no one wants to venture into.

First let me lay out the difference between an appraisal and a home inspection.

An appraisal is something that a mortgage company or a bank would require in order to verify the value of any given piece of real estate.

An inspection on the other hand is something that can be optional prior to a real estate transaction.

The home inspection process is designed to identify evidence of potential problems with a given piece of property.

For a seller, a home inspection would be valuable in helping to determine the potential issues that need to be resolved before listing.

For the buyer, it helps protect them against purchasing a piece of property that has a lot of underlying problems that are not necessarily identifiable to the untrained eye.

So an appraisal is a bank attempting to verify value, whereas an inspection is focused on identifying potential problems as a means to protect the buyer and seller against unforeseen issues.

The value of a home inspection

As a buyer, the best way to protect yourself against unforeseen, future problems with your next real estate purchase is to have a thorough home inspection conducted.

A proper home will reveal potential problems with key components of your future home such as foundation issues, leaks in your roof, problems with the septic system, and other structural or mechanical issues.

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