Even I was a skeptic when I started in this business 10 years ago. Its not the big deficiencies that make it worth while those are easy to justify. For myself I believe the value is the time spent at the home while I complete the inspection and the discussion on site when the inspection is completed. This time gives you the buyer a chance to really have a thorough look at the home, I believe the more sets of eyes the better. I follow an inspection standard but that’s not always going to address concerns that you as the buyer may have. I had clients walk from a home once after the inspection because of their concerns about the neighbors and activity next door. That’s not something written in a standard but I feel is a valid reason not to carry on with the purchase.
The discussion at the end of the report often is focused on prevention and proactive maintenance more than large defects. As a snapshot two of which occur very often are loose toilets and moisture behind shower tiles. These two issues occur often in new homes only 2-5yrs old as new structural lumber dries the home settles and small hairline cracks or separation occur in tile grout allowing moisture behind the wall. Toilets are fixed to plastic drain plumbing and do not settle as the floor does. These small issues would be discussed to ensure preventive repairs are completed to avoid big issues down the road. This is where the inspection value really lies.
With house prices approaching $1million for the average single family dwelling in the GTA and a home inspection cost of about $400.00 how could you not justify doing a home inspection even its just about advice on maintaining your purchase. If nothing else its 3hrs of time to really decide on what may the largest purchase you may ever make.