The Perfect Property

Buying An Older Home? Make Sure That Your Home Inspector Checks These Things

by Zachary Thompson

When you're in the market to buy a home, opting for an older property can be appealing. Old homes can have unique designs that you find endearing, as well as a coziness that isn't prevalent in some newer homes. While you might be dreaming of taking ownership of a house that has caught your eye, you should always make sure to hire a home inspector first. The inspector will check a wide range of things to ensure that the house doesn't yield any unpleasant surprises. Where older homes are concerned, it's a good idea to have the home inspector look a little more carefully at certain elements. Here are some examples.


Old homes can use a variety of materials for insulation, including some that may not meet modern building codes. When an inspector checks a newer home, he or she typically doesn't look into the insulation situation. In an older home, doing so is vitally important. Make sure that the home inspector has a plan for assessing the insulation in the home. He or she can't simply cut a hole in a wall to check, so it will be necessary to check in the attic and look around in the basement for signs that the home's insulation meets approval.


Your home inspector needs to also carefully inspect the electrical system in the home. In older homes, wiring may not meet modern safety standards, which can leave you with an increased fire risk. The inspector can assess the electrical system by checking out the circuit panel and noticing signs that the home's wiring is either new or old. Additionally, the inspector may even wish to remove a wall outlet cover or a lighting fixture to check the condition of the wiring behind it.

Sewer Pipe

A problem with an old home's sewer pipe can be costly, as well as pose a major inconvenience to you and your family. To minimize the risk of such a problem cropping up once you own the home, make sure that your home inspector will check the sewer pipe. The inspector can't dig a hole in the home's yard to check the pipe, so he or she will have to rely on technology. In many cases, the inspector can use a thin camera on a cable that is passed down through a toilet to capture footage of the condition of the sewer pipe. If problems are evident, this information can be shared with the current homeowner, who may wish to excavate to determine the extent of the situation before selling the home.

Talk to a real estate agent, like Mattox Realty, for more help.