August 21, 2019

Condo Check: Home inspection for the condominium

September 30, 2011 By MichaelKing

Many times, buyers of brand new houses mistakenly think they can skip the all-important home inspection. Likewise, and equally unfortunately, many condo buyers think they can do the same, and fail to see the necessity of a home inspection. Condos are not, just as new houses are not, guaranteed to be flawless; a decent home inspection, completed in a few hours, could save you a lot of hassle later on.

In a home inspection, an expert assesses your potential home and determines any current or potential problems – all before you buy. Discovering them at this juncture is much more preferable than discovering it after you buy; you may find issues that affect your decision. For this reason, a home inspection of a condominium is just as important as one for a house: condos are just as susceptible to many of the same issues and concerns.

Both the interior and exterior of a condo need a thorough assessment. In the interior, particular areas that need attention include electrical wiring; plumbing; and appliances and fixtures. The exterior and common areas of the condo also require an expert eye, including (but not limited to!) the exterior walls; balcony; stairs; roof; and exterior electrical and plumbing systems. In the common areas, it is important to have even the parking structure and foundation assessed.

All of these areas require constant and thorough maintenance. A home inspector will do a top-to-bottom assessment, and determine the condo’s condition. In doing so, you can be identify potential problems– if management has not maintained the structure, the monthly fees of the condo could either drastically increase later, or, a Special Assessment fee could be levied on all unit owners as a way to pay for repairs. Either way, you could be faced with heavy fees, in addition to a faulty unit.

To avoid this, the answer is simple: Before you sign, inspect! Find a reputable inspector, one who specializes in condos, and get the full picture of your potential home. A short time commitment and a one-time expense is far preferable to risking thousands of dollars and getting a less-than perfect new home.

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