You've finally found that special property after months of searching. Both you and the seller have agreed on a price with the help of your Realtor. Your lending institution has pre-approved loaning you the funds if the appraisal of the property comes in at or above the agreed upon selling price. You are psyched big time! But wait! Is there anything more that you can do, should do, or must do to ensure that you've made a good investment? The answer is absolutely yes!Having a certified building inspector and septic system professional come to the property within a couple of weeks of a signed contract by the buyer and the seller is the best investment in money and peace of mind that you will make prior to closing on a property. What are the inspections that you should definitely have done? On the New Hampshire Association of Realtors Purchase and Sale Agreement Standard Form there are 8 suggested areas listed in which a buyer, at his or her expense, have the right to have performed within a reasonable amount of time. I will touch on the first 3 in this blog. They are;
- General Building Inspection - depending upon the size of the building, garage and number of out buildings this can cost anywhere from $300 to upwards of $500. For most properties the cost is $350 and takes approximately 2 hours. The inspector checks absolutely everything in and around the outside of the house, looking for any signs of wood issues, appliance issues, electrical, plumbing, roof, foundation, and generally all possible safety issues.
- Sewage Disposal - If you have a septic system on the property it is wise to have it checked by a professional. Typically the holding tank is pumped and then the inspector will inspect In this the baffles, run water from the house to see that everything is flowing smoothly. The cost can vary but typically it is $250 to pump the system, if it hasn't been done recently, and another $100 - $125 for the written inspection.
- Water Quality - It is always a good idea to have the water tested, especially if it is well water, as there could be contaminants that are of health concerns. Some of the contaminates, such as bacteria, radon, iron, lead and arsenic occur naturally. Others such as pesticides, chemicals, road salt, improper waste disposal and other contaminants can find their way into the soil and water supply due to improper handling. The State of New Hampshire has a list of certified labs, visit des.nh.gov. Also check out Water Quality Testing for Private Wells in New Hampshire. The standard cost for your water to be tested is $85-$130. To have the water tested for radon , the cost is $80. More on Radon Water Quality in the next blog. See this link for further information on the associated costs and what they test for at each level.