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No need to waive a home inspection in a tight market

Peace of Mind Home Inspections is a company now offering abbreviated walk-throughs to people searching for a house.

MINNEAPOLIS — With inventory in the Twin Cities housing market low, buyers look for any possible way to gain an edge on the competition. Many choose to forego a home inspection to sweeten the deal. 

That’s why inspectors like James Peterson at Peace of Mind Home Inspections offer an abbreviated version.

It’s a condensed scope walkthrough inspection that is meant to give a potential buyer as much information as they need to make an educated offer on a house. It takes about an hour, and looks at major items that could need repairs in the next 10 years, according to Peterson. 

RELATED: Housing market improves in the metro area last month amid inflation

Peterson walks side-by-side with the buyer through the house, typically starting on the outside, at the top of the house, eyeballing the roof.

“We’re looking for shingles that have come lose or blown away, we’re looking for shingles that are curling up, or sometimes we’re going to see issues with the roof slope and how it’s draining the water," said Peterson. 

During the walkthrough, Peterson takes time to teach buyers what to look out for when it comes to different types of roofing and siding materials, and how to properly maintain them. 

For the foundation, look for signs or symptoms of previous movement. 

“We’re looking for cracks that we typically take two quarters – fit them sideways inside of – and that would be indication that the movement would be more than most builders would consider typical,” Peterson said. 

Once inside, a couple common tools used during the walkthrough consultation are an outlet tester to look for wiring anomalies, a moisture meter to test around areas that potentially have moisture damage or leaks in the basement and other levels below bathrooms, and an infrared camera.

Peterson offered some more tips for potential buyers to try themselves: 

  • Bring binoculars to get a better look at the roof since you won’t have access to it 
  • Take pictures of the water heater and air conditioning unit to determine age 
  • Bring a flashlight to look for water stains on ceilings, especially under bathrooms and kitchens 
  • Look for water damage under sinks, near water heaters and behind furnaces
  • Bring a golf ball to test whether floors are level

For more information on walkthroughs or complete home inspections, check out the Peace of Mind Home Inspections website here

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