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A New Adventure: Why New Construction Inspections Matter

Americans love new construction. Indeed, 15% of all residential home transactions during 2004 were of newly-constructed homes, according to data from the National Association of Realtors and the US Census Bureau. NAR reported 6.78 million existing homes sold; the census reported that 1.2 million newly constructed homes sold. However, it may be hard for buyers of new homes to predict which systems will need maintenance or attention first in a new home, since there’s no previous owners have lived there.

In theory, a newly constructed home will be in mint condition. However, whether you plan to pay a builder to custom-build your home or you are looking at recently-completed construction, new homes and condominiums require just as much attention from a home inspector as older homes. New construction inspections* can help buyers assess a home’s structure before, during, and after construction completion. The benefit of new construction inspections is that they allow buyers to address issues before the home is completely built – which can save buyers time and money on maintenance.

New construction home inspections involve anywhere from one to two visits to your new home. Once the home is move-in ready, inspectors will arrive for a move-in inspection to double-check any loose ends builders may need to address before you buy or take occupancy of your home. Most new construction includes a one-year warranty, and many who buy new construction opt to buy a one-year inspection conducted before that warranty expires. Here’s a look at what inspectors research during each stage of a new home inspection:

Move-in inspection

This inspection is performed when construction is finished and ready for occupancy, and just prior to the final walk through by the builder. This timing allows the customer to get critical information about their new home, and also allows the builder to make any corrections necessary prior to closing. During a walk-through, inspectors will review whether electrical and mechanical systems are functioning properly, if vents have been correctly installed, whether the heating and cooling systems are ready for use, if adequate insulation is in place or if more is needed, and more.

One-year anniversary inspection

This inspection takes place typically 30 days before the expiration of the builder’s one-year new home warranty. This full home inspection addresses all areas of the home and provides a report that the homeowner may want to bring to the builder’s attention so any needed repairs can be completed before the warranty’s expiration date.

Search our directory for your local inspector and ask for a new construction inspection today. Our home inspection professionals will guide you through the process and provide you with further information on available services in your area.