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How Much Does A Home Inspection Cost In 2024

Home Inspection

This year, very few homes are being sold without an inspection. If you’re working with a real estate agent, they will, most definitely, suggest it. The same is true for insurance companies. A thorough home inspection done by a licensed specialist can help you save thousands of dollars by evaluating the condition of the house and ordering the seller to fix the issues.

But how much will you have to pay for an inspection? Do they charge the same in different states? Are there any extra costs involved? Are frequent inspections worth it? And what about an appraisal? These are just some of the questions that we’ll cover in this guide, with a heavy focus on the actual cost of an inspection today. Let’s get started!

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The Importance of a Home Inspection

The United States law doesn’t require a home inspection to be performed before signing a contract with the house seller. That’s why some buyers skip this part: they believe it’s time-consuming and costs a lot. However, we strongly recommend hiring a specialist to do a proper evaluation of the home. They will examine not only the general functionality but also the overall integrity of the house.

Now, unless you have experience with residential property and know where to look, you won’t notice all the sagging doors, faulty outlets, bad plumbing, or malfunctioning furnaces. As a result, you’ll have to pay for the repairs later from your own pocket. In contrast, when the inspector creates a detailed report on the condition of the house, the owner will either have to lower the price or fix the faulty parts before the deal is closed.

men doing a home inspection
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How Much Does a Home Inspection Cost?

On average, in the US, a thorough home inspection will set you back $400. The actual cost will largely depend on the area and the city. For example, in northeastern states, they’ll charge you $500+. In contrast, inspectors in the Central United States and the West work at lower rates. The best way to figure out the exact price for a home inspection is to get in contact with company officials.

Or you can use a price calculator on specific websites. All you’ll have to do is enter the zip code for your city and get an estimate. Last, but not least, there’s the option of consulting with your real estate agent. If they mostly operate in your area, they’ll have a list of inspectors with a proven record and how much they charge (usually, 80–150 an hour). Here’s a more detailed look:

  • Average Cost in the US: $400
  • Average Range for an Inspection: $280–500
  • Low-End Price for the Service: $125
  • High-End Inspection Price: $800

For $400, you’ll get what’s called a full home inspection that covers not only the walls and the appliances but also electricity, the HVAC system, plumbing, the roof, the attic, and the basement. If you’re not ready to pay as much, you can opt for a 4-point inspection. The average price for such a service is much lower: +/- $125 and it only covers roofing, HVAC, plumbing, and electricity.

High-end inspection, in turn, will cost $800+. With it, you’ll get thermal imaging: that can locate moisture/water trapped inside walls. The company will set up cameras and record images to find signs of mold and water damage to the foundation, ceiling, and walls, among other things. If you live in a high-humidity area, this will be a reasonable investment. On its own, thermal imaging costs $250.

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Home Inspection Cost By Location

Inspectors in the east charge more for their services than experts elsewhere in the US. Here’s how much different parts of the country charge in 2022:

  • The East Coast: $400–550
  • The North Coast: $350–500
  • Midwest US: $350–450
  • South-Atlantic States: $325–400
  • The West Coast: $300–350

Home Inspection Cost By State

And now let’s switch to a state-by-state comparison and see where home inspectors tend to cost more. Keep these numbers in mind: they’ll help you get the best deal and avoid unreasonably expensive services. Right now, South Carolina has the cheapest home inspections ($275–400). As for the rest, check the list:

  • $300-375: Michigan, Kentucky
  • $325–375: Ohio, Wisconsin
  • $325–400: Connecticut, Georgia, Missouri, Nevada, Virginia
  • $325–425: Florida, Maryland, North Carolina
  • $325–450: Alabama, California
  • $350–425: Arizona, Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Pennsylvania
  • $350–450: Alaska, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New York, North Dakota, South Dakota, Vermont, West Virginia, Wyoming
  • $350–475: Maine
  • $375–425: Mississippi
  • $375–475: Minnesota, Arkansas, Utah, Texas
  • $375–525: Colorado
  • $400–475: Oklahoma, Tennessee, Rhode Island
  • $425–475: Louisiana
  • $425–550: Idaho, Oregon
  • $425–600: Washington
  • $450–500: New Mexico
  • $400–600: New Jersey
  • $425–600: Washington

Consult a home audit expert

Find a inspection specialist in your area, and get free, no-commitment estimates for your project.

Home Inspector
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Home Inspection Cost By Square Footage

The size of the home has a significant impact on how much an inspection costs. In the US, the cost is calculated based on square footage, and the bigger the residential property, the more you’ll need to pay to have it inspected. Right now, the average cost per sq. ft. is $0.22. It can be as low as $0.18 or as high as $0.25, depending on the state.

Also, older houses usually take more time to check. While a newer home can be thoroughly inspected in 2–3 hours, a decade-old residential property will take 4+ hours. The reason: they have more problematic areas. And if you want the pool and the septic checked as well, that will sum up to 5–6 hours, or more. Check out the most common sizes and their prices:

  • $150–200: 800 square feet
  • $180–260: 1000 square feet
  • $220–300: 1200 square feet
  • $250–350: 1400 square feet
  • $300–400: 1600 square feet
  • $350–450: 1800 square feet
  • $360–500: 2000 square feet
  • $400–550: 2200 square feet

Additional Costs to Anticipate

Licensed home inspectors check every single corner of the house. With that said, sometimes, they recommend a more specialized inspection. For example, if the HVAC is acting up, or if there are big issues with electricity, you’ll be asked to pay extra to have that checked thoroughly. The same is true for plumbing, insulation, and more. Take a look:

  • HVAC system: $250–400
  • Electrical system: $125–250
  • Plumbing system: $100–250
  • Home Insulation: $100–200
  • Windows: $80–150
  • Roof: $125–600
  • Foundation: $300–1000+
Home Inspector
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Specialty Inspections: How Much Do They Cost In 2024?

The so-called “specialty” evaluations aren’t a part of a regular inspection and have to be paid separately. But they are often used by potential buyers that want detailed info on the pool, radon, septic, sewer, and more. Here are the average costs for these inspections in the US:

  • Mold Inspection: $400–800
  • Radon Testing: $150–300
  • Lead Test: $200-300
  • Soil Test: $650–1800
  • Asbestos Test: $250–800
  • Radon Inspection: $150–400
  • Sewer Scope: $200–1100
  • Septic Tank Checkup: $150–300
  • Pool Inspection: $150–300
  • Pest Control: $40–350
  • Extra Electric Inspection: $50-150
  • Extra Plumbing Inspection: $180-250

If you live in an old house, it might be a good idea to opt for an annual inspection. As the name suggests, that will grant you a full inspection once a year. The home will be checked for any traces of mold, asbestos, radon, etc. On average, an annual inspection costs $200.

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How Often Should I Get a Home Inspection?

If you’re the buyer, you should only get it once before signing a contract with the seller. And if you’re the owner, it’s recommended to have a thorough inspection done once in 3–5 years. For a new house, you can do this every 5–6 years or so. The experts advise yearly inspections even for brand-new homes. The reason: termites and humidity do short work of any building’s foundation.

That’s why annual inspections are important. The sooner you find a problem and deal with it, the better. Again, if the house is less than a decade old (and located in a relatively dry area), do this once in 3 years. As for the basement, have it checked twice a year to fight moisture and mold.

Home Inspector
Image Credit: Olivier Le Queinec, Shutterstock

What is an Appraisal? How is it Different from an Inspection?

An inspection primarily focuses on the condition of the house. An appraisal, in turn, evaluates the fair market value of that residential property. Yes, appraisers check the property personally as well. However, they don’t usually stick around. An appraisal puts together the curb appeal, location, functionality, and safety of the house and compares its cost to recently sold real estate in the same area and of roughly the same size.

Just like an inspection, an appraisal done by an experienced specialist can help potential buyers get the best bang for their buck. Do keep in mind, though, that it takes time to properly assess a house. That means you might have to wait for a week or two before they send you an appraisal report. This will cost +/- $400, depending on the state, city, and location of the house.

How to Prepare For a Home Inspection?

As a buyer, you won’t have to do much. If you have the time, meet the inspector on the designated day and be there while they’re checking the house. It’s always better to talk to an expert face-to-face and have them reveal all the minor and major issues right there and then. Or, if there’s no way you can make it there on time, they’ll send a detailed report later.

If you’re the seller, there’s a lot to do to get the home ready for an inspection. Here’s a list of things to check/fix before the specialist arrives at the house:

  • The exterior: The walls, foundation, and roof. The first thing that inspectors look at is the foundation (whether it’s saggy or not). The same is true for the walls. For the roof, you need to clean all the debris and make sure there are no broken tiles or downpours.
  • Inside the house: The floors, attic, basement, doors, and windows. A squeaky floor, poor insulation in the attic, a blocked basement, and tilting door/windows with old and rusty pulls and knobs will definitely be included in the inspector’s report.
  • The major systems: HVAC, plumbing, and electricity. See that every single outlet in the house is working and there are no worn-out wires. As for plumbing, there should not be any clogging in the sinks, bathrooms, or toilets. See that the heating and cooling systems work properly as well.
  • The appliances and the hardware. Check every single kitchen appliance and hardware (like a washing machine). If there are any signs of a leak or an electrical short, have that fixed ASAP.

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You can’t overestimate the importance of a home inspection in 2022, especially if this is your first time buying a new house. In the US, inspector services are reasonably priced, and they do a great job of revealing issues with plumbing, electricity, the roof, doors, roofs, and more. This way, you get to save on unexpected (and expensive) future repairs.

A home inspection is also useful if you’re planning on selling a residential property and want to prepare for potential buyers. Today, we talked about the average cost of an inspection in the States, what additional costs you can expect, how often it should be done, and how to prepare for it. Use this information to get that dream house!

Featured Image Credit: shisu_ka, Shutterstock


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