How Much Does a Home Inspection Cost?

Gemma Johnstone
Written by Gemma Johnstone
Updated October 29, 2021
A contractor on a ladder checking a house’s roof
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The average cost of a home inspection is $339, and most potential home buyers spend between $279 and $399

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When it comes to a home inspection, budget for anything between $200 and $500. If you’ve had an offer accepted on a new house, a home inspection can give you peace of mind that your dream home will be hazard-free on move-in day and even save you money by asking the sellers to pay for any needed repairs before closing. Learn more about the cost of a home inspection and what may impact the price.

What Factors Influence the Cost of a Home Inspection?

As well as the size of your home, several other factors can influence how much a home inspection costs. This includes where you live, the condition of the property, and what the inspection covers.

4 cost factors for home inspections, including location and age of the home
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Home Location

The average cost of a home inspection varies depending on your location. For example, in Detroit, the average price is $290, whereas, in New Jersey, it’s $420.

Size of the Building

Many inspectors charge a fixed price for homes up to 2,000 square feet, but others may charge less for a condo or mobile home under 1,000 square feet. 

For a standard home size, the average price is around $300, and for large homes over 2,000 square feet, expect to pay $400 or more. For a small condo, you may secure an inspection for around $200.

Some inspectors will have a flat fee for homes up to 2,000 square feet and charge an extra fee of around $25 for every additional 500 square feet above this.

Age of the Home

It’ll come as no surprise that a home inspection can sometimes cost more for an older home. The inspector may need more time to check wiring and plumbing and make sure things are up to code.  

You shouldn’t neglect to get an inspection for a new home either, in case the builder overlooked any details during the build. You want to ensure all the work is up to code and that the property is structurally sound before going ahead with a purchase.

What the Inspection Includes

A plumber examining water pressure at a house’s sink
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Most home inspections cover a range of standard checks, but it is always a good idea to compare quotes from a few different local licensed home inspectors to make sure they’re thorough. Not every inspection will cover all the same elements.

Typically, you can expect checks to include:

  • Plumbing

  • Electrics

  • Building foundations

  • Roof

  • Windows and doors

  • Overall interior and exterior condition

  • HVAC systems

  • Attics

  • Basements

  • Major built-in appliances

If you have concerns about an insect or rodent infestation or asbestos, you can request extra checks. However, these typically require specialized certification or extra time, and there will be an additional charge—for example, an asbestos inspection averages around $500.

Thermal Imaging Home Inspection Cost

Some inspectors offer a thermal imaging service for a more thorough inspection of the home for things like infestations, structural or electrical problems, or energy efficiency. You can expect to pay as much as $250 more on top of the main inspection costs for this.

FAQs about Home Inspection Costs

Why is investing in a home inspection so important?

Often the unseen issues with a property can be the ones that turn out to be the most stressful to resolve. While inspections aren’t a legal requirement, they can highlight significant issues. Things like damaged foundations, excessive mold, leaky basements, or problematic plumbing or electrics, for example, can all cost thousands of dollars to repair, and the work can be invasive.

Knowing about these issues in advance will allow you to decide if you want to proceed with the purchase. The seller may even knock something off the sale price to help you cover any renovation expenses or take care of them before closing.

Can I do a home inspection myself without the help of a professional?

Unless you or a family member are knowledgeable about the construction trade, it isn’t a good idea to conduct your own home inspection. A certified local home inspector will have lots of experience, know what to look for in your home, and be up to date with the local safety and regulation code requirements.

How do I ensure the inspector I hire is a pro?

If you’re working with a realtor, chances are they have a trusted inspector they’ll hire to help. Although the licensing requirements for home inspectors vary from state to state, they need to have local certification and valid insurance. Inspectors can have affiliations with a few professional associations, such as the American Society of Home Inspectors.

Even once you have established that an inspector is fully qualified, it’s good to check out reviews of their work online and get quotes from a few for comparison. Once you hire a certified local inspector, ensure you are home when they conduct their inspection to check they do a thorough job. It typically takes around two to four hours to complete an inspection, and they’ll provide you with a detailed report on completion.

Who pays for the home inspection?

As a home seller, you may want to conduct a home inspection to help you finalize a fair asking price for your property. Typically, though, the home buyer pays for the inspection to allow them to make an informed decision before proceeding with any purchase.

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