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Why inspect a foreclosed home?

That depends on what a person perceives the value of a home inspection to be.
First time home buyers benefit from the knowledge they obtain on the overall condition of the homes major systems, proper maintenance and available upgrades.
Some  people use a home inspection report as a bargaining tool so they can ask for needed repairs or to reduce the purchasing price.
Some people believe they are getting the home at such a low price, they will be able to do any repairs needed later and still be under the value of the home, so they choose not to inspect.
The real question is why has the home been foreclosed on?
The main reason in this economy is the owner was unable to make the mortgage payments due to lose of work, divorce, illness, etc.
Another possibility is the home has a hidden defect or needs costly upgrades that will cost more to repair then the home is worth. 
Keep in mind foreclosed homes do have a greater potential for hidden damage and additional repair costs. Many of these homes may have suffered wear and tear or damage at the hands of the previous owners.  
In most of these cases the home maintenance stopped long before the owner defaulted.
This could result in maintenance costs and repairs that exceed the savings on the purchase price of the home.
In some jurisdictions you will have a city inspection.
A city inspection is a code compliant inspection, not a detailed home inspection.
You have the right to hire your own inspector.
1st Step Home Inspections can help you buy your home with a better knowledge of the homes true overall condition. As trained and certified ASHI home inspectors we will work for YOU and we'll provide invaluable help in turning you into a knowledgeable consumer.
A home cannot fail an inspection. Remember there is no such thing as a perfect home.
 A professional home inspection gives you an independent, unbiased view of any problems and their solutions, so that you will have all the facts you need to make a sound, informed decision. 
Partial list of things to be checked: 
Structure -  basements, crawl spaces and attics - Including; cut/altered or damaged trusses and joists, moisture intrusion and visible mold. Bowed, leaning or damaged foundations. 
Exterior surfaces - including;  Improperly supported or rotting decks, Improper soil slope, worn or damaged siding and chimneys.
Roof coverings - weather permitting - Including;  Wear and tear due to age, weather damage or improper installation. 
Plumbing systems - Including; Improperly installed, missing, worn or damaged components.
Electrical systems - Including; Dangerous homeowner installations/modifications, faulty or damaged wiring and
needed upgrades.  
Heating and air conditioning - Including;  Components in need of servicing or replacement due to age, improper installations and damage. 
Interior surface and components - Including;  Physical damage to doors, walls, heating ducts, electrical outlets, lights, load bearing walls, Etc. 
Insulation and ventilation - Including; Lack of or altered insulation, possible visable asbestos, exhaust fans ducting into the attic, Improper wiring, damaged flues and moisture damage.  
Fireplaces and chimneys - Including; Damaged visable areas of the flue liner, damaged flue dampers, creosote build-up, missing flue caps and loose/missing mortar.  
Maintenance Items - Including; Lack of proper maintenance on the mechanical equipment, the exterior and grounds and recommended upgrades.
Buying a house may seem like an endless series of critical, important decisions.
When you find the house that is right for you, you need to find a home inspector to educate you about the condition of your new home. 
This is a common place and wise decision.

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Foreclosed Home Inspections