Understanding Narrative and Checklist Home Inspection Reports

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If you’re thinking about buying or selling a home, you’re probably aware that you’ll need to schedule a home inspection before closing. This can be a stressful event for both buyers and sellers, as they may not be quite sure what to expect. Before the inspector evaluates the property, it’s helpful to understand how he or she will present the results. Inspection reports can be a little confusing, but here, we explain what’s on your home report.   

Narrative Report

There are two main types of home inspection reports: narrative and checklist. Instead of simply checking off features, a narrative report provides a thorough, written explanation. It can be overwhelming to look at a highly detailed report that’s formatted like an essay or article, but this method of inspection reporting can be helpful to both the seller and potential buyer. Instead of vague ratings of the home’s features and their condition, the narrative report provides a clear overview of the home without the need for further clarification. When you’re looking through a narrative inspection report, you’ll notice that there are no abbreviations and most of the descriptions are easy to understand. However, if you’re ever confused by the results of a narrative report, just reach out to your inspection company for further explanation.

Checklist Method

For the sake of simplicity, some home inspection companies prefer to use the classic checklist method to report findings about the home. Like the name suggests, inspectors who use this method of reporting check boxes off on the list to indicate features of the home. Unlike the narrative report system, a checklist usually doesn’t contain many comments. The checklist will typically contain a rating system for each aspect of the home, and the inspector will mark each area good, fair, or poor. In most cases, you shouldn’t worry about receiving fair ratings. If there’s a problem that should be addressed, the inspector should make a brief comment or suggestion. While the checklist report approach is common, it has the potential to be more vague than the narrative reporting method. Instead of a detailed explanation about specific aspects of the home, the checklist is more open to interpretation. However, this doesn’t mean that the checklist method isn’t effective. In most cases, the inspector will take more detailed notes when necessary to prevent confusion. If your understanding of the checklist report isn’t crystal clear or you have concerns, don’t hesitate to request further information. A qualified and professional home inspection company should be willing to answer your questions thoroughly.

While there are pros and cons to each type of home inspection report, the type of report used by your home inspection company is a matter of preference and policy. When you’re in need of an inspection for a home that you’re buying or selling, feel free to reach out to Homerun Inspection in Denver, Colorado. We’re dedicated to providing our clients with high-quality home inspections. If you’re ready to schedule an inspection, contact us by phone or reserve your appointment online.

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