A home inspection is an extensive exam of the structure and systems of a house. It details problems with the property and if they’re serious enough to prevent a sale. The three main points of an inspection are physical condition, items in need of repair or replacement, and the remaining useful life of major systems.
A report won’t cover defects that are not visible, inoperable systems (e.g., A/C during the winter), or code violations.
It’s a good idea to be present during the inspection: you can ask the inspector questions, and the inspector can point out areas of potential trouble and may offer maintenance tips.
Expect an inspection to take 2-5 hours (old homes may take longer), and expect charges of $400+ depending on size.
The seller is not required to make repairs, but the buyer can use the report in potential further negotiations
To hire an inspector, get recommendations from your Realtor or from others who have used them, Social media etc. Be sure to ask about references, memberships in professional associations, professional training, and experience.