Should I hire an engineer to inspect the house?

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

It may be a good idea to hire an engineer to look at a house you are considering buying if the home inspector turns up any issues that require an engineer’s expertise to evaluate; however, we don’t recommend that you begin your home evaluation with an engineer. 

   Most engineers don’t do building inspections, and the ones that do often specialize in commercial buildings and forensic evaluations, not inspecting residences. There is an organization, the National Academy of Building Inspection Engineers (www.nabie.org), whose members specialize in building inspection. But there are only 9 members in Florida and not all of them will do a home inspection. Also, an inspection engineer is significantly more expensive than most home inspectors.

   But an engineer is definitely useful to a homebuyer after the home inspector finds a problem that needs further evaluation, especially where the problem is structural and requires repair. Damaged roof trusses or a failing foundation, for example, require the services of an engineer to specify the repair materials and procedure and then certify that the repair is adequate.

   When these kinds of issues arise during one of our inspections, we will always refer you to a local engineer for an opinion, as the next step in evaluating the home.

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  To learn more strategies for getting the best possible home inspection, here’s a few of our other blog posts:

How can I make sure I don't get screwed on my home inspection? 

How thorough is a home inspector required to be when inspecting a house?

Should I trust the Seller's Property Disclosure Statement?

Can I do my own home inspection?

How can homebuyers protect themselves against buying a house over a sinkhole? 

The seller gave me a report from a previous home inspection. Should I use it or get my own inspector? 

If we already looked at the house very carefully, do we still need a home inspection?

    To read about issues related to homes of particular type or one built in a specific decade, visit one of these blog posts:

What are the common problems to look for when buying a 1940s house?

What are the common problems to look for when buying a 1950s house?

What are the common problems to look for when buying a 1960s house?

• What are the common problems to look for when buying a 1970s house?

What are the common problems to look for when buying a 1980s house?

What are the common problems to look for when buying a 1990s house?

What problems should I look for when buying a country house or rural property? 

What problems should I look for when buying a house that has been moved?

What do I need to know about buying a foreclosure? 

What should I look for when buying a former rental house?  

What problems should I look for when buying a house that has been vacant or abandoned?

What are the most common problems with older mobile homes?

What should I look for when buying a house that is being "flipped" by an investor seller? 

What do I need to know about a condo inspection?

What are the "Aging In Place" features to look for when buying a retirement home?

   Visit our HOME INSPECTION page for other related blog posts on this subject, or go to the INDEX for a complete listing of all our articles.

How To Look At A House

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