The short answer is no, you don’t always need an inspection to get homeowners insurance. This is something that’s left up to the discretion of each individual insurer. Some may be strict and require inspections in all cases. Some may be lenient and only require inspections of homes built before a certain date. If your insurance company does require it, you can’t just get any inspection and expect it to suffice. You’re going to need a particular type of home inspection.
The 4 Point Inspection
What you’re going to need is a 4 point inspection. As the name implies, 4 point inspections focus on 4 areas of the home, which are:
- The HVAC
- The Roofing
- The Plumbing
- The Electrical
The goal of a 4 point inspection is to a be a more focused inspection that’s tailored towards the needs of insurance companies.
Why Is This Required?
Liability. It’s that simple. Insurance companies want to minimize their liability. From their perspective, they are running a business, not a charity. Of course, it’s a mutually beneficial relationship, but they don’t want to be paying out more than they’re taking in. Homes that are particularly at risk — mostly older homes — need to be carefully examined to make sure that they aren’t going to present an excessive amount of risk.
As for the question of why other types of inspections don’t count, the answer is fairly simple. Insurers only need to know certain facts about a home to calculate their liability. It doesn’t really matter what color the walls are or even whether or not they contain lead paint. Similarly, it doesn’t matter all that much if the flooring isn’t in perfect condition. Basically, they don’t want to have to dig through a comprehensive report to find the information they need. A 4 point inspection is more focused and the report is tailored exactly to what these companies want to see.
The Bottom Line
If your insurance company doesn’t ask for one, there may not be much of a reason to seek out a 4 point inspection. However, you should absolutely get a buyer’s inspection no matter how new the home is. There is a long list of things that can go wrong in a home — even one that was just recently constructed. An inspection is the only way to reliably determine whether or not a home is free from issue.
4 point inspections may strike you as an unnecessary hassle, but even if you are required to get a 4 point inspection there are upsides. Would you really want to live in a home that insurers deem too risky? If it’s not a good investment for them, it probably isn’t a good investment for you either.
If you’re in the process of buying — or building — your dream home, you’re going to need an inspection. Please, contact us today at Super Inspection Pros for more information about our services or to schedule an inspection of your home.