City Inspection or Hire inspector?

6 Replies

Hi everyone!

Quick question, I am about to close on a duplex and I’m curious about how to go about getting an inspection. The seller already paid for a city inspection to come out before closing date, this is done every 2 years. The seller is selling the property as-is. Should I personally hire an inspection or is a city inspector sufficient? I’m mainly concerned about safety and liability for the tenant.

Thank you

@Chris Bachis

The city inspection is a building code inspection.  It does not give you any opinion on recommendations of equipment or other components.  How old is the roof?  HVAC equipment?  Water heater sizing or life span? Many other items as well.

@Chris Bachis

Have them provide the permit information and final inspection from the city.  You should be good upon receiving confirmation that everything is up to code with the remodeling.

Regardless of whether things are up to code or not is irrelevant- if you aren't sure if you should get an inspection, then absolutely you should. Many cities "grandfather" items for code. If it was up to code when it was built, it is allowed to stand upon a sale. That doesn't make it safe or proper- sometimes it's fine, sometimes it's not. If you are worried about a $500 inspection fee, then you should reevaluate your deal or your buying criteria. If you are negotiating effectively, the inspection will save you money. 

Even though your place was recently remodeled, you could certainly hook up a fancy, new stainless steel range to knob and tube wiring. I'm not saying that's your situation, but you don't know the details unless you are experienced enough to discover them on your own or hire a professional inspector. 

Good luck!

Most city inspectors do a quick view of the property and sign off on it. It’s truly up to the contractor to do the work up to code and ensure everything works correctly.

I would always have my own inspector review the house whether or not it’s new. Unfortunately, there are a lot of contractors who cut corners and many people don’t realize it until a few years later when things start failing.