No matter if my client is looking at New Construction in Scarsdale, Condos in Croton or Chappaqua Real Estate, I urge the buyer to have a licensed engineer conduct an inspection prior to execution of the contract.

Most of us don’t know sheetrock from shingles so having an experienced inspector who knows what to look for is common sense. Even if you are somewhat familiar with the inner-workings, and construction of a home, four eyes are better than two.

I always recommend an inspector who I work closely with, but I urge clients to also ask around for other recommendations.

What happens on inspection day? With my engineer you are usually looking at about a 4 hour affair at which time every nook and cranny of the new home is examined. Basement to roof, wall to wall, inside and outside.

My inspector encourages the buyer to walk around with him, not only to point out items he finds, but also to educate the buyer about the home he is about to purchase. So besides knowing whether or not the roof needs to be replaced, or which faucets needs tightening, you’ll also learn where the water and gas shutoffs are, where the sump-pumps leads or where the plumbing “trap” is.

No house is perfect and there is no such thing as a perfect inspection. Even the homes I’ve sold that are in the best shape generate a 40 page report with photos of issues found during the examination.

Here are some examples of very common and very minor issues that I see very often: Leaky faucets, soil or mulch against siding, broken GFI outlets, damaged windows sashes, and minor wood rot. All of those are minor and expected.

Here are some of the major issues that would generally require fixes and or credits at closing: Roof issues, foundation cracks or sinking foundations, termites, serious window issues, illegal plumbing or electric, unaddressed recalls and mechanicals such as boilers or AC compressors delinquent for service and buried oil tanks.

Finally, you should note that an engineering inspection doesn’t generally test the septic system, fire suppression system or well water. If your new home has any of these, you should certainly have these items inspected by a licensed professional as well.

An engineering inspection generally runs somewhere between $500 and $1000 depending on the size of the property. If you use NestEdge, we can pay that fee for you, as part of our broker commission rebate.