Hiring a home inspector is one of the key steps to the home buying process. Missing this step could land you a money pit, costing you hundreds if not thousands of dollars in repairs and renovations that you could have been aware of if you’d only had a home inspection. But what if you choose the wrong inspector? How do you know the inspector has your back and are the right ones for you?

There are a lot of ways to check out your home inspector before hiring them. 4 Biggest Regrets Home Buyers Have from Choosing the Wrong Home Inspector

Ask for credentials and qualifications.

Inspector should be certified and potentially part of the American Society of Home Inspectors. You can certainly ask friends or referrals but your real estate agent, as long as they are seasoned and experienced, should have a qualified inspector you can contact. Reputable agents demand qualified inspectors because they want their buyers to be informed.

Related: Problems to look for when buying an older home

Biggest Regrets Home Buyers Have from Choosing the Wrong Home Inspector

Review a sample of the home inspection report.

A good home inspector should send you a sample report of what your home inspection will look like. If the report is just a couple of pages, the inspection may not have been thorough. A comprehensive inspection should be between 20 and 50 pages and should contain color photographs highlighting any defects or problem areas. The inspection report should cover mechanical, structural, electrical, and plumbing and be thorough and accurate.

Avoid inspectors who recommend contractors or perform their own repairs.

An inspector that also does repairs may be looking for problems that really aren’t there. Home inspectors are in the business of inspecting a home, not recommending contractors or performing the repairs. This could be a conflict of interest and liability issues may ensue.

Attend the home inspection.

If an inspector or even your real estate agent doesn’t want you to attend the home inspection, this could be a big red flag. You always want to accompany the home inspector through the property learning as much is you can about the home and the property it sits on. The inspector should walk you through the home to point out any defects or problem areas that could arise in the future. This is a great way to find out more about your property, ask questions, and find out how long certain appliances and features could last.

I would say that the biggest regret many homebuyers have about hiring the wrong inspector is that they didn’t get a chance to accompany the inspector through the property. This is probably one of the number one things all homebuyers should do. Remember, this is hundreds of thousands of dollars you’re spending on a property. It only makes sense to learn as much is you can about the property before finalizing the sale.

Biggest Regrets from Choosing the Wrong Home Inspector