Getting your future home inspected is an integral part of the buying process. Although you are excited about settling in – your barbecue pit, oven, fireplace, and even house-warming party ideas are already fired up in your mind – a home inspector may uncover issues that could make you reconsider your purchase. A home inspection is an objective visual examination of the physical structure and systems of a house, from the roof to the foundation. 

With the help of your Mave & Market agent, you may want to ask for repairs, renegotiate the price, or back out of the contract. We encourage inspections for our buyers who are purchasing to be built or newly constructed homes as well. Why not have your builder fix problems before you take possession of the home, rather deal with a warranty issue later?

Buying a home could be the largest single investment you will ever make. To minimize unpleasant surprises and unexpected difficulties, you’ll want to learn as much as you can about the newly constructed or existing house before you buy it. A home inspection may identify the need for major repairs or builder oversights, as well as the need for maintenance to keep it in good shape. After the inspection, you will know more about the house, which will allow you to make decisions with confidence.

Interested in getting a home inspection? See Scheduling Charleston Home Inspection or read more about home inspections in Charleston.


At Mave & Market, we encourage you to hire a professional Charleston Home Inspector once you are under contract to purchase a home. Obtaining an inspection is part of your due diligence as a home buyer. We want you to be aware of problems before - rather than after - you own the home. Of course, you should be aware that a home inspection is not exhaustive - some issues may be left undiscovered - but having an inspection will certainly provide more information about the property than forgoing this step.

Inspections are ideally scheduled within the review period to allow the buyer time to review the inspector's findings before committing to the purchase. Typically, a home inspector is contacted immediately after the contract or purchase agreement has been signed. Before you sign, be sure there is an inspection clause in the sales contract, making your final purchase obligation contingent on the findings of a professional home inspection. This clause should specify the terms and conditions to which both the buyer and seller are obligated. Typically, the home buyer is not on the property while the inspection is taking place, since most home inspections take several hours. Instead, the home buyer will meet the inspector and their Realtor on the property afterwards to review the inspector's findings. The inspector will prepare a formal report and submit it to the buyer within a day or two after the inspection meeting.



The price of a home inspection is based on the size and age of the home, as well as any special inspection items such as a pool, sprinkler system, termites, and septic system. Mave & Market typically sees clients pay between $450-$650 for a thorough home inspection.



A Charleston Home Inspector is sometimes confused with a Real Estate Appraiser. A Charleston Home Inspector determines the condition of a structure, whereas an appraiser determines the value of a property. Although not all states or municipalities in the U.S. regulate home inspectors, there are various professional associations for home inspectors that provide education, training, and networking opportunities. A professional home inspection is an examination of the current condition of a house. It is not an inspection to verify compliance with appropriate codes. A building inspection is a term often used for building code compliance inspections in the United States.



Charleston Home Inspectors are trained to search for visual and structural problems in and around the home. The main interest of a Charleston home inspection will be in the function and safety of the home. The standard home inspector’s report will cover the condition of the home’s heating system; central air conditioning system (temperature permitting); interior plumbing and electrical systems; the roof, attic and visible insulation; walls, ceilings, floors, windows and doors; the foundation, basement and structural components.

Foundation: The inspector will look for cracks, differing grades, erosion, water pooling and the efficiency of the foundation's drainage.  

Roofing Materials: Skylights, evidence of water penetration and the roof's materials will all be noted.

Roof Structure and Attic: The attic's ventilation, insulation, degree of completion and ease of access will be reported. 

Interior and Exterior Walls, Ceilings, Floors, and Doors: Here, the inspector wants to make sure there are efficient escape routes available to residents and that there is no water penetration. 

Porches, Balconies, Decks, and Carports: Generally, the home inspector makes sure that all porches, balconies, etc. have sure footing, guardrails and were constructed properly. 

Heating, Cooling and Electrical Equipment: Electrical panels should all be grounded, insulated and not placed in a hazardous location, e.g. the bathroom. The inspector will also make sure that your AC and heating equipment each have functioning units, valves, coils, and thermostats, and that they are not corroded in any way.  

Plumbing Systems: When it comes to plumbing, inspectors will look for deficiencies such as leaks and the lack of water pressure and water supply to showers and sinks. They will also check for drippy faucets and cranky commodes. 

Appliances: The appliance inspection is relatively thorough. Deficiencies from the home's stove, dishwasher, food waste disposal, range exhaust vent, oven and microwave oven, trash compactor, garage door operators, doorbell and dryer vents - just to name a few - will be included in the final report.

Exterior: Grading, exterior vegetation, drainage, driveways, patio floor, walkways, and retaining walls (with their respect to the condition of the building), eaves, soffits, and facias will all be included in the final report of your home inspection in Charleston. 



There are some features of a home that may not always be covered by a regular Charleston home inspection. When buying a home with a pool, septic system or potential termite damage, we strongly encourage our clients to have these special features checked by an independent, licensed inspector. Problems with these features can be hard to spot if you don't have a trained eye. Uncovering potential problems through special inspections before closing can save a buyer from expensive repairs in the future.


For those building a brand new home in Charleston, your builder will have inspections along the way. These inspections include foundation, framing, plumbing, electrical, air conditioning and heating systems (HVAC), insulation, and final inspections. Mave & Market encourages clients who are building a new home in Charleston to have a Pre-Drywall Inspection, which provides a thorough, visual report of the "bones" of the home before the sheetrock goes up, an important step that's not available to inspectors for completed or resale homes. In addition, we encourage our clients to have an independent final inspection before closing so that any issues uncovered can be addressed before closing.



A disaster inspection occurs after a natural disaster such as a hurricane, earthquake or tornado in which a large numbers of buildings may have been damaged. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) prepares for and coordinates large scale disaster relief efforts, including the inspection of damaged buildings. Disaster inspectors document conditions of buildings for government disaster relief payments.


An 11th month inspection is an inspection of a newly constructed home before the 1 year full warranty ends in an effort to discover any defects requiring warranty service.


Insurance companies sometimes require an inspection of a houses roof and the HVAC, electrical and plumbing systems before providing homeowners insurance. The name four point inspection derives from the four areas of interest.


A separate HVAC inspection should be performed by a licensed HVAC contractor if the home inspector notes any issues with the system or corresponding components (duct work, filtration system, etc). A heating ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) home inspection reviews the heating and cooling system of a home from a performance and operational perspective. A typical inspection will carry out a visual observation and operation of the HVAC system. The inspection will consider visible and readily accessible components, while noting adverse and material defects present at the time of inspection. Given the large investment a faulty HVAC system is on a homeowner, a separate HVAC inspection will help reduce risk for the buyer by reporting observed material defects. The inspector may recommend a repair, maintenance or system replacement, depending on the unit's age and condition. The inspector should provide a statement on perceived useful remaining life of the HVAC system as a whole. 


Buyer’s inspections are the most common type of inspection in the United States. The persons purchasing the property hire an inspector to help identify major defects and other problems so they can make an informed decision about the building's condition and the expense of related repairs.


A homeowner who is selling their house hires an inspector to identify problems with their house. The seller can elect to share the report with any potential buyers or to make any necessary repairs so the house is known to be in good condition encouraging a quick sale. One home inspector's organization offers a program which helps market a house as "Move-In Certified", that is the house is in a condition where the new owners can promptly move in without making substantial repairs.


Mave & Market strongly encourages purchasers of newly constructed homes to get a licensed, objective professional to perform an inspection before purchase. Although the home's structure and materials may be brand new, the practice of builders using their own biased inspectors is not. New home inspections should be completed during various stages of construction. The typical inspection stages include: foundation pour, structure, pre-drywall, insulation, and final. Important issues such as structural support, duct routing, and plumbing cannot be completely inspected after the drywall or attic insulation is installed.



During a home inspection, a home inspector will carry out a visual observation and general operation of the plumbing system. The inspection will consider the water heater, readily accessible pipes, fixtures and components, while noting recognized adverse defects present at the time of inspection. If defects are reported, the buyer may want to consider having a plumbing inspection completed by a licensed plumber. A plumbing inspection typically reviews the visible water supply and waste removal sewage system. Furthermore, a plumbing inspection often involves a closer observation than just the outside, especially in the case of galvanized pipes, which may not appear to have visual defects. Lastly, a plumbing inspection takes a deeper look into the water flow of the plumbing system. If a plumbing inspection is requested or required, only a state certified plumbing contractor should complete the inspection.



Swimming pools and spas are often excluded from a general home inspection because they require special training and take more time to inspect and report. If the home you are purchasing has a pool and/or spa, it is highly recommended a separate inspection be completed by a licensed professional.



A pre-delivery inspection allows the buyer to inspect the property prior to closing. These inspections generally take place up to a week before a closing, and they generally allow buyers the first opportunity to inspect their new home. Additionally, the inspection is to ensure that all terms of the contract have been met and that major items are in working order.

In new construction homes, the buyers and a representative of the builder (generally the construction supervisor or foreman) may be accompanied by a home inspector of the buyers choice. Any noted defects are added to a punch list for completion prior to closing. Often a second inspection is conducted to ensure that the defects have been corrected.

In a resale situation, this type of inspection is often termed the final walk-through, and, based on the contract's provisions, it allows the buyer the opportunity to inspect the home prior to closing to ensure that agreed-upon repairs or improvements have been completed.



The Federal and State governments provide housing subsidies to low income people through a program often known as Section 8. The government expects that the housing will be "fit for habitation" so a Section 8 inspection identifies compliance with HUD's Housing Quality Standards (HQS).


Structural inspections report on the foundation and supporting elements of a home. When performing a structure inspection, the home inspector will look for a variety of distress indications that may result in repair or further evaluation recommendations.


Termites are one of the most common household pests. Since these insects eat wood from the inside out, it can be difficult to recognize the signs of an infestation if you're not familiar with them. When buying a home, a termite inspection is almost always required. We always recommend that our clients hire a licensed termite inspector to inspect a home before buying. An inspector can identify current and past termite damage in a home as well as hazards that could encourage an infestation. Buyers can also ask the seller for a history of termite infestation in the home during the inspection process.


A thermal imaging inspection using an infrared camera can provide inspectors with information on structural heat loss, moisture leaks, and overheat conditions on electrical wiring that are not normally visible to the naked eye.


For our home buyers who choose not to have construction phase inspections, we encourage them to hire an independent inspector before the end of the home builder's warranty period. A homebuyer's builder warranty will cover repairs needed within the first year (though some structural and foundation warranties are much longer on new homes). Our clients have found that this inspection typically generates a list of items for the builder to coordinate and repair, the cost and effort of which outweighs the cost of the inspection. Warranty inspections are also known as Eleventh Month Inspections.



Once the inspection is complete and the home buyer has a good understanding of the inspection report, the agent helps the buyer determine the significance of the inspector's findings and prepares a list of any necessary repairs. If the inspection report uncovers standard issues, we may advise that our client ask the seller to repair the items before closing. If more significant issues are uncovered, the buyer can either back out of the contract, ask for repairs to be made, or ask the agent to help them renegotiate the contract to reflect the home's deficiencies. Having a home inspection provides peace of mind to the buyer and helps uncover problems with the home that could result in costly repairs for the new owner.