MARCH 1, 2004 (Palm Springs, Calif) – The California Real Estate Inspection Association (CREIA) cautions homebuyers to make sure they are fully informed about the house they are considering purchasing before negotiating with the sellers. Successful negotiations, in any transaction, require that all parties act in good faith, with intentions that are forthright, transparent, and genuine.
It is imperative that you have a qualified, professional home inspector provide you with independent, unbiased information about the house, to protect you from costly mistakes and needless misgivings. The purchase of a home is one of the largest single investments you will ever make. You should know what to expect---in terms of needed and possible repairs and maintenance. A fresh coat of paint could be hiding serious problems. Stains on the ceiling may indicate a chronic roof leak or may be simply be the result of a single incident. The inspector reviews these and other clues and then presents a professional opinion as to the condition of the property to help you avoid unpleasant surprises afterward.
Of course, an inspection may also point out the positive aspects of a house, as well as the type of maintenance needed to keep it in proper shape. After the inspection, you will have a much clearer understanding of the property, and be able to make your purchasing decision confidently.
Not all differences with a seller can be worked out. If you find yourself stonewalled by a seller whose motives are suspect, you'd be wise to regard the impasse as fair warning - as a red flag of impending consequence. As a general rule in real estate, there is always another good deal around the corner. Many buyers have ignored telltale signs such as these and have suffered regrets when the latent consequences became financially apparent. Reality can be very painful after the close of escrow. It's easier to leave the table with your money still in hand than to recoup your losses when the negotiating is finished.
To locate a qualified inspector near you, call CREIA at (800) 388-8443, or visit their website at www.CREIA.org. Since 1976, CREIA, a non-profit voluntary membership organization has been providing education, training, and support services to the real estate inspection industry and to the public. Inspectors must adhere to CREIA's Code of Ethics and follow the Standards of Practice developed by the association. These Standards of Practice have been recognized by the State of California , and are considered the source for home inspector Standard of Care by the real estate and legal communities.
CREIA requires its members to successfully pass a comprehensive written examination of property systems and complete 30 hours of continuing education each year. Members can accumulate credits through various sources of education including monthly chapter meetings, conferences, and other approved activities. CREIA keeps records to ensure that members are complying with the requirements. Educational topics cover a variety of technical subjects including updates and advances affecting the profession of real estate inspection. CREIA is dedicated to consumer protection and education.