Right now many soldiers returning from abroad to JBLM are noticing the low prices around base and record low interest rates and are purchasing homes. As we’ve mentioned in past posts, VA Loans are one of the best loans out there- and if you are eligible to use your VA Certificate to purchase your home you can purchase it with very little out of pocket. The biggest mistake VA Buyers make when purchasing their first home is not getting a home inspection.
Why VA Buyers are less likely to get home inspections isn’t exactly clear, says Cyrus Bonnet, a JBLM Real Estate Agent and former soldier. “It’s true that VA Appraisers are often more picky than the average appraisal, but they are not a substitute for a thorough home inspection.”
Appraisals (even VA Appraisals) are not home inspections. An appraiser is hired by your bank to make sure you are not paying more for the house than it is worth, make sure the house meets VA Requirements for general overall condition, and to protect the banks investment.
“Most people have heard that you should really get a home inspection,” says Cyrus Bonnet. “But once they are in the process of buying a home, they look at that $300-$400 expense and wonder if they should skip it. Especially when the home they are purchasing is brand new.
New homes need home inspections, too. Many people assume that because the home they are buying is new that it is in perfect condition. “Not true!” Says Cyrus Bonnet. “The quality of a new home is only as good as the subcontractors who worked for the builder. Quality of construction and finish work varies, and an experience licensed home inspector is going to be able to help spot builder defects and unfinished or sloppy work that could cost you money down the road.”
In Washington State home inspectors are required to be licensed. Your Realtor should be able to refer you to several qualified and licensed inspectors that you can choose from. Heed the warning, hire a home inspector, and avoid the headaches of unanticipated repairs.