(Note: These tips pertain to the industry cited above and do not necessarily track our experience with the company in whose report they appear. In particular, industry complaints referenced below are typical of the industry as a whole, but not necessarily every company in the industry.)
If you are considering hiring a home inspector, the Bureau recommends that you carefully read the company's contract and guarantee. Home inspectors perform visual inspections of properties which are being sold. Do not assume that a basic inspection is all that you need. The basic inspection may not uncover defects which could cost you thousands of dollars. You should understand that in the basic inspection inspectors do not move furniture, boxes, or appliances which could be covering problem areas. They also do not do invasive inspections to determine the condition of wiring, plumbing, or insulation inside the walls. If the house being inspected is older, poorly maintained, or of cheap construction, you may need additional inspections. If your inspector cannot do this, you should hire an appropriate professional, such as an electrician or plumber. You will have to obtain the homeowner's permission to pull up flooring, drill holes, move furniture, or the like.