Knowing what to do when you inspect a property can save a lot of heartache and confusion when it comes time to look for you dream home. Homebuyers can quickly get caught up in the excitement of searching for their dream home, and let emotions override common sense.

Hiring a buyer’s agent can help with the entire process. Once the agent has located a suitable property, they will give the home a look-over. Whilst the agent checks the property for their client, buyers still should inspect everything themselves before making an offer. Follow the suggestions on our home inspection checklist to make the process easier.

Home inspection checklist

When checking out your potential dream home, it is imperative to know about things that fail a home inspection so you can be on the lookout. Do not focus just on a home’s interior. There can be exterior issues that make any home a potential money pit or even an all-out deal-breaker.

Exterior Checklist When You Inspect A Property

  • Check the condition of the paint on all exterior surfaces.
  • Check paving for cracks and other damage.
  • Test garage remotes to ensure they are in working order.
  • Look for any swampy patches in the yard that could indicate a burst pipe or drainage issues.
  • Inspect for termite damage on any exterior wood by tapping and listening for a hollow sound.
  • Look at rooflines for sagging or missing tiles or rust.

Interior Checklist

  • Check for mould and damp patches, which could signal plumbing issues or leak issues.
  • Inspect ceilings: sagging ceilings are a sign of moisture problems and can lead to the foundation shifting.
  • Note any cracks: cracks (more than 2.0mm in width) in walls are indicators of potential foundation issues. On walls, fine cracks with a ‘map’ pattern are signs of imperfectly installed wall plastering.
  • Look inside cabinets in all wet areas (kitchens, baths) for signs of mould.
  • Check for ‘drummy’ render (that sounds hollow when you tap it) or other signs of water damage in walls, especially next to bathrooms.


  • Turn on the heat and air conditioning to ensure both are in working order.
  • Inspect all HVAC units for rust, overheating, and leaks if it is a gas unit.


  • Verify the school catchment area if you have children.
  • Check public transport options.
  • Check proximity to shopping, health services, and employment opportunities.

How a buyer’s agent can Help Inspect A Property

Buyers’ agents are trained to spot all potential issues of a property, so it is wise to request that they inspect your prospective home.

These home inspection tips are useful for buyers and sellers. Buyers should be sure to check for each of the tell-tale signs of trouble. Likewise, sellers should be prepared either to make necessary repairs before placing their home on the market or discount the listing price to reflect needed maintenance and repairs.

Not everything on the checklist, if discovered, warrants crossing a home off your list. If the property ticks off most or all of your wish list requirements, consider discussing needed repairs with sellers to see if they will budge on price. Your buyer’s agent also can help negotiate needed repairs with sellers as a contingency of the sale.

It is important to note that some repairs are compulsory, and sellers might not have the option to ignore them before listing a property. Your buyer’s agent can identify any such repairs once the initial inspection is complete.

The home inspection bottom line

The home inspection process can be intimidating, especially if you haven’t bought a property for many years. Prospective homebuyers can leave their anxiety at the door when one of our buyers’ agents is guiding them through the process. Reach out to us today to set up a no-obligation consultation.

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