July 2006 (Palm Springs, Calif) - In an ongoing series during its 30th anniversary year, the California Real Estate Inspection Association (CREIA) cautions home buyers and sellers, as well as all individuals involved in real estate transactions, that there are myths and misconceptions associated with retaining the services of a professional home inspector. CREIA presents Part Three of the continuing series “Myths & Realities about Home Inspections”.
Myth: The inspection report is a seller’s repair list.
REALITY: The purpose of a home inspection is not to serve the seller with a repair list. The primary objective is to know what you are buying before you buy it. All homes have defects; it's not possible to acquire one that is perfect. What you want is a working knowledge of significant defects before you close escrow. The inspector’s role is not to identify a complete repair list for the home, nor is it the sellers obligation to repair any problems discovered by the home inspector. Sellers are not required to produce a flawless house. They have no such obligation by law or by contract; most repairs are subject to negotiation between the parties of a sale. Sellers make repairs as a matter of choice, not obligation; to foster good will or to facilitate consummation of the sale. Sellers maintain the legal right to refuse repair demands, except where requirements are set forth by state law, local ordinance, or the real estate purchase contract
Myth: A home for sale “As-Is” does not need an inspection.
REALITY: There are some misconceptions regarding the so-called “As-Is” sale of real estate. When a seller states they are selling the property “As-Is”, it does not relieve the seller of certain responsibilities under California state laws relating to the sale or transfer of ownership of real property. The seller is still required to disclose all known material facts to a buyer by completing a “Real Estate Transfer Disclosure Statement,” commonly referred to by the real estate industry as a “TDS.” A property being sold “As-Is” is really being sold “As-Is” as disclosed. A buyer should always obtain an independent professional property inspection to be fully informed as to the current condition of the property.
Make sure you retain the services of a qualified inspector who is trained and experienced in home inspection. It is also very important that your inspector be a member of a professional association such as CREIA to ensure qualifications and continued education. Since 1976, CREIA, a non-profit voluntary membership organization has been providing education, training, and support services to the real estate inspection profession and to the public. Inspectors must adhere to CREIA's Code of Ethics and follow the Standards of Practice developed and maintained 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 written test of property systems and complete 30 hours of 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 that affect property inspection and the business of real estate inspection.
CREIA is dedicated to consumer protection and education. To locate a qualified CREIA inspector near you click here or call CREIA at (800) 388-8443.