BOULDER – After signing a contract to purchase a home one of the first and most important things that happens is the home inspection. Depending on the size of the home a standard home inspection will cost between $300 and $600. There may also be other things to consider that could be specific to your home and could be an additional expense. Your inspector and/or real estate professional can make suggestions as to which might be useful in your case. These “add-ons” include but are not limited to:
A sewer line scope to determine if the main sewer line is damaged or obstructed. These scopes can usually be done at the same time as the general inspection but buy a separate contractor.
Radon testing is performed on most homes that have contact with the ground, be it a basement, crawl space or slab on ground. The test equipment will have to be in place for a least 48 hours. In most cases your home inspector can do the test.
Heating and air-conditioning systems and roofs are typically covered in a general home inspection. However, if your inspector suspects there are problems or if the systems are older they may suggest an evaluation by a system specific professional.
If you are purchasing and older home and plan on doing renovations you may want to have some things tested for asbestos. Homes built between 1930 and 1950 may have insulation or vinyl flooring that contains asbestos as well as those with ceiling texture done prior to 1978. Asbestos in a home is not hazardous if it is not disturbed. Homes built in the 1960s or early 1970s may have aluminum wiring that may need evaluation by an electrician.
The presence of lead is another test performed on older homes. If you are planning on performing renovations, repair or painting projects that disturb the paint in homes built before 1978 the paint should be tested for lead. Some supply water pipes in homes built before the 1930’s were made of lead, especially the main water supply pipe. If the home was build prior to then a water quality test would be prudent.
Surface sampling for mold may be useful to determine if an area suspected of having mold has been adequately cleaned or remediated. However, since no EPA or other federal limits have been set for mold or mold spores, sampling cannot be used to check a homes compliance with federal mold standards
A few other “add-on” items that may be considered are, photovoltaic and thermal solar systems, swimming pools, hot tubs, additional out buildings and methamphetamine lab testing.