After you find a home that you like, the next step is to ensure the house is in top condition with a home inspection. Once the buyer and seller have settled on price, the inspection lets the buyer know that the soon-to-be-purchased home is really worth the money inside and out. But a home inspection is never a guarantee that your new home is going to be in perfect working order.  Additionally, sellers may want to consider ordering a pre-sale inspection to avoid issues before the house is contracted.

  1. 1.   Roof leaks
    The biggest issue to slip through a home inspection is a roof leak. That’s because generally a home inspector doesn’t go onto the roof to check on its condition. To guarantee that you are buying a house with a durable roof you may want to consider hiring a licensed roofing contractor to provide a full evaluation.


  1. 2.   Faulty appliances
    Part of a home inspection is checking that all major appliances are functioning properly. To confirm that all appliances work, a technician will run them through one or two cycles to make sure there’s no trouble, such as a leaking refrigerator or a smoking dryer. However, the check is only a neutral source confirming that the appliances work, not an internal or technical diagnostic of the appliance. That means an appliance could work fine the day the inspector tests it, and flare up on move-in day when the seller has already been absolved of any responsibility.


  1. 3.    Heating, ventilation and air conditioning
    Air conditioning systems are one of the top problems that home inspectors can miss as they generally only ensure the system is in working condition at the time of inspection. When the home-inspection report is issued, it usually contains a disclaimer that relieves inspectors of this liability. To cover any glitches with your cooling systems down the road you want to have the system checked by a licensed specialist separate from the home inspection.


  1. 4.   Damaged siding and windows
    Real-estate contracts are structured so that major systems, such as electrical and plumbing, are reviewed and obligate the seller to fix any deficiencies to complete the sale. However other imperfections that fall outside of the contract’s purview may go unrepaired. For example, damaged siding or old windows that the seller is not required to fix but that could develop into a much bigger and costly problems down the road.


  1. 5.   Hidden Damage
    Inspectors look for evidence of significant wear in plain view, but the things that can’t be seen pose a risk. Speak up about any concerns you have about the house and probe what is under some moldy carpet or cracking tile. 
    Additionally, buyers can seek sellers’ permission to remove superficial facades for the inspector to take a deeper look.

For more information about buying, selling and/or leasing real estate in the USVI, please contact Jennie Rosenberg at or 340.690.4903.