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Home Inspection

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BUSINESS
March 25, 2011
A home inspection often means the difference between a sale and no sale, even if the deal that results isn't exactly what the owner expected. Buyers and sellers typically recognize the need for a home inspection. Still, it may put both sides of a sale on edge. Sellers fear the inspector will find something amiss that slashes the price. Buyers fear the house they want will have problems. Today, with so many houses for sale, inspections have become the chief tool for haggling over price.
REAL_ESTATE
January 13, 2008 | By Alan J. Heavens, Inquirer Real Estate Writer
Buyers are getting pickier about the condition of the houses they'll consider, understandable given the number of possibilities available for them to choose from. But their concerns go much further than overgrown hedges or chipped paint on the front porch. Buyers are again asking about lead in the paint and water, asbestos, radon, indoor air quality, and mold - questions many appeared to put aside when competition for houses was the stuff of bidding wars. Avoiding things that might cause chronic illness doesn't always seem to be the prime motivation.
REAL_ESTATE
April 25, 1999 | By Alan J. Heavens, INQUIRER REAL ESTATE WRITER
Although many real estate agents continue to accuse them of "killing" deals, home inspectors have become an important ally in the buyer's search for quality housing. "You may not be able to negotiate with the seller to fix all the problems that are found, but at least you'll know the full extent of the home's trouble areas and what the financial impact of repairing them will be," said Donald Dugan, who recently traded up from a Northeast Philadelphia rowhouse to a detached single in Warminster.
REAL_ESTATE
September 19, 1999 | By Alan J. Heavens, INQUIRER REAL ESTATE WRITER
Getting a home inspection has become standard operating procedure for buyers. Since 1980, the percentage of home sales that were contingent on a home inspection has increased from 5 percent to probably 75 percent nationally, according to the American Society of Home Inspectors. It is less a part of a home seller's repertoire, but there are signs that this may be changing. A growing number of sellers appear to be worried about hidden defects that could be serious enough to delay settlement or even kill a deal when the buyer's inspection uncovers it. "We've seen a large increase in the number of seller[-originated]
REAL_ESTATE
May 24, 2015 | By Alan J. Heavens, Inquirer Real Estate Writer
A few weeks back, I replied to a reader's question about "ghost shadows" on his ceiling. It isn't as spooky as it sounds. The reader was asking about paint he could use to hide the lines, which reappeared after he had painted the ceiling three years ago. Of course, I responded to his request for a paint recommendation by suggesting a shellac-based product that I have used to cover water stains from leaks that have been repaired and to keep...
BUSINESS
September 11, 1992 | by Herb Drill, Special to the Daily News
Even though a home-warranty contract may be the best way to insure against unwanted surprises, a home inspection is the next best thing. "I tell them to get a home inspection for an 'out' if something goes wrong," Leonard A. Sloane, a Delaware County attorney, says, referring to both the buyers and the sellers who seek his representation. "Typically, there's a clause that the buyer will have a right to get a home inspection within 10 or 15 days of signing the agreement. "If the inspection finds things wrong, or in excess of usually $1,000, certain things are triggered.
NEWS
March 22, 1996 | by Earni Young, Daily News Staff Writer
Several major city banks are expected to bow to pressure from Mayor Rendell's administration to pay for home inspections on properties purchased by low-income buyers - but only if the city agrees to pay to fix any problems uncovered. The agreement would benefit thousands of lower-income homebuyers who receive $1,000 settlement assistance grants from the city, and help many avoid falling behind in mortgage payments because of unforseen repairs. The banks - PNC/Midlantic, CoreStates/Meridian, Mellon, Beneficial Savings, Commerce and First Union (formerly First Fidelity)
BUSINESS
July 8, 2012 | By Reid Kanaley, Inquirer Staff Writer
Mortgage rates are at historic lows, but borrowing terms are strict and home prices are still down. So selling a house requires strategy and, often, artistry. Let these Web resources assist you. Reader's Digest says to be sure to pick a real estate agent with an aggressive online presence for listed homes. In particular, that means providing online shoppers with more than six photos of a listed property. Owners should also "post a video love letter about your home on YouTube," Facebook your listing and invite neighbors to a block-party open house to get them to recommend your property to their friends who might be looking to move into the neighborhood.
REAL_ESTATE
November 8, 2015 | By Alan J. Heavens, Inquirer Real Estate Writer
Home buyers these days are picky, preferring properties that are in move-in condition, with no major flaws that will require expensive repairs in the foreseeable future. Most also are looking for some sort of guarantee - insurance, if you will - that appliances and mechanical systems, if they break down, can be returned to working order without digging deeply into pockets emptied of the cash needed to buy the house. One option is a home warranty, typically bought by the seller to cover the first year after the house is purchased.
BUSINESS
August 2, 2013 | By Alan J. Heavens, Inquirer Real Estate Writer
A group representing suburban real estate agents and brokers says a proposal in eastern Delaware County for inspection and repair of sewer laterals as a condition of a home sale would make transactions more complicated and expensive. While the Malvern-based Suburban Realtors Alliance understands the situation facing the Delaware County Regional Water Quality Control Authority, the Realtor group's president and CEO, Jamie Ridge, said, the draft ordinance would violate Pennsylvania law by delaying real estate transactions indefinitely to correct building-code infractions.
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NEWS
June 25, 2016 | By Emily Babay, STAFF WRITER
A Montgomery County-based home inspector defrauded at least 138 property buyers by promising inspections he never performed, prosecutors said Thursday. Joseph T. Michalski, 46, of Souderton, is facing charges of felony theft by deception, receiving stolen property, and other offenses for allegedly ripping off customers of his business, Sherlock Homes Inspection Services. The company sold home-inspection services such as water, termite and radon testing, the Montgomery County District Attorney's office said.
REAL_ESTATE
November 8, 2015 | By Alan J. Heavens, Inquirer Real Estate Writer
Home buyers these days are picky, preferring properties that are in move-in condition, with no major flaws that will require expensive repairs in the foreseeable future. Most also are looking for some sort of guarantee - insurance, if you will - that appliances and mechanical systems, if they break down, can be returned to working order without digging deeply into pockets emptied of the cash needed to buy the house. One option is a home warranty, typically bought by the seller to cover the first year after the house is purchased.
NEWS
October 9, 2015 | BY VINNY VELLA, Daily News Staff Writer vellav@phillynews.com, 215-854-2513
AFTER DOLORES Deissler died at 87, her family turned to the Edward Hugh McBride Funeral Home in Kensington, which made sure that her viewing July 16 was "absolutely perfect," her son Joe said. Relatives came from near and far to celebrate the life of the mother of seven. "We didn't have any issues. We all were totally happy with the work Patty did," said Joe Deissler, referring to Patricia Vallone McBride, the funeral home's director. But as far as the state is concerned, McBride's "work" never should have been done.
REAL_ESTATE
June 29, 2015 | By Alan J. Heavens, Inquirer Real Estate Writer
Recently here in the Real Estate section, I've been looking at issues that listing agents say can make selling a house more difficult. Some are easily corrected, such as removing clutter, washing windows, or sprucing up the front gardens with mulch. Others require time and expense, including rewiring, sanding, and refinishing floors, and replacing a roof or a furnace. Today's buyers want properties in move-in condition and hang on every word of a home inspector's report, even if it's something as weird as - as a Cherry Hill seller told me - "the house has dated wallpaper.
NEWS
June 15, 2015 | By Kellie Patrick Gates, For The Inquirer
Hello there Jason was ushering at his Germantown church, as he did Sunday after Sunday. But on this particular Sunday in summer 2005, in walked a man with a gorgeous Philadelphia-style beard and a bit of swag. "I kept staring at him the entire time, trying to get his attention, and he would just not give me anything back," Jason said. Two weeks later, Jason was in a telephone chat room for singles and phone-met a very interesting man named Anthony. They got along so well Jason invited him to his place near the Temple campus.
REAL_ESTATE
May 24, 2015 | By Alan J. Heavens, Inquirer Real Estate Writer
A few weeks back, I replied to a reader's question about "ghost shadows" on his ceiling. It isn't as spooky as it sounds. The reader was asking about paint he could use to hide the lines, which reappeared after he had painted the ceiling three years ago. Of course, I responded to his request for a paint recommendation by suggesting a shellac-based product that I have used to cover water stains from leaks that have been repaired and to keep...
BUSINESS
February 1, 2015 | By Alan J. Heavens, Inquirer Real Estate Writer
The home-improvement industry has fared much better than the broader housing market, according to a report Thursday from the Joint Center for Housing Studies at Harvard University. In fact, industry experts are predicting that 2015 could see record spending on home improvements. After years of declining revenue, the industry is reinventing itself, said Kermit Baker, director of the joint center's Remodeling Futures Program. The industry "is finding new ways to address emerging growth markets and rebuild its workforce for an evolving customer base," he said.
REAL_ESTATE
April 21, 2014 | By Christine Bahls, For The Inquirer
You know confusion looms large when Google offers more than three dozen pages on a search of this topic: Appraisal vs. home inspection . An appraisal determines how much a home is worth, which in turn will determine how much someone can borrow to purchase it. If a buyer needs a mortgage, an appraisal is inevitable. "It's an appraiser's job to offer an unbiased opinion" on monetary value, said Bennie Waller, professor of finance and real estate at Longwood University near Richmond, Va. A home inspector issues an unbiased evaluation of condition.
REAL_ESTATE
February 16, 2014 | By Alan J. Heavens, Inquirer Real Estate Writer
Although many buyers these days avoid properties that require major renovation, that doesn't mean they're shunning first-year projects designed primarily to make the houses they do purchase their own. Even during the real-estate boom, when buyers often had some money left over after down-payment and closing costs, wisdom dictated that you didn't embark right away on anything too extensive. That wisdom still prevails. If you've owned a house before, you have a sense of how to proceed.
REAL_ESTATE
August 19, 2013 | By Alan J. Heavens, Inquirer Real Estate Writer
Susan Graves of Century 21 Alliance in West Chester responded to a recent column about fixer-uppers with a video of one of her listings in Modena, a tiny borough (535 people) in Chester County. I don't usually write about properties under $20 million, but I was curious to see what constitutes a $45,000 listing these days in horse country, as Graves focused much of the video's first three minutes on location. The house is actually a twin, built in 1910, and the owner did most of the interior demolition work and installed new windows.
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