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What do you know about home inspections and appraisals?

You found a California house you like, and you want to make an offer. Before that, you must complete a home inspection. Does the seller or buyer usually cover the cost?

SFGate explains who pays for a home inspection and appraisals. Learn more about how to structure your home-buying budget.

The standard

Usually, the buyer covers the home inspection and appraisal costs. The total price depends on the home’s location and size, but aim for spending between roughly $300 and $500. Only hire a certified home inspector with experience evaluating the property type you want to purchase. Sellers may absorb the cost if they want to sell ASAP, or if you qualify for closing cost assistance.

The appraisal

Your lender hires the home appraiser. Once the appraiser finishes, the lender receives the evaluation results. If you want a copy of the findings, you must pay $300 to $450. Before securing a mortgage, you must agree to pay for an appraiser. Lenders want to know whether they make a sound business decision by agreeing to invest money in your dream home. To save money, you may prefer to hire the appraiser yourself. Usually, lenders only work with appraisers they hire themselves, so do not waste your time.

The option to waive inspection

You may feel that it makes little sense to inspect a newly built home, or you may plan on remodeling most of the property later. Either way, consider hiring an inspector anyway, so that you and your family may rest easy and know what issues you might expect in the future.

Understanding home inspection and appraisal options lets you make well-informed decisions when buying a home. Arm yourself with knowledge for improved peace of mind.