How Much Does a Home Inspection Cost?

A home inspection is a vital part of the home buying and selling process. While prices may vary, the average cost of a home inspection is approximately $300. The fee may be higher for larger homes or specific issues such as mold, termite, or radon inspections. Paying for a home inspection is a smart move for buyers, but it can also be valuable for sellers. Understanding the typical home inspection cost is essential so that customers can include it in their home buying or selling budget. While a professional home inspection isn’t required to buy or sell a home, getting one is highly recommended to protect both the buyer and seller for a smooth transaction.

What’s the average cost of a home inspection in the U.S.?

According to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, the average cost of a home inspection is between $300 and $500 but can be as high as $600 or more in some instances. Overall, the typical general home inspection cost is around $350.

What determines the average cost of a home inspection?

Several factors can determine the average price for a home inspection. Things like the home’s location, the region of the country or state where the property is located, and applicable travel time are considered. The size and age of the home also play an important role. Cost may also vary depending on the current conditions in your specific real estate market and how many qualified inspectors are available in your area. Additional services like radon and asbestos testing and mold inspections can also increase the total cost of the inspection.

What’s included in the typical home inspection cost?

A professional home inspector certified by The International Association of Certified Home Inspectors, or InterNACHI®, is trained to use a specific home inspection checklist. This checklist covers over 1,600 features of a property that may require attention or repair. The average cost of a home inspection includes looking at the yard for any potential water issues or septic problems. It also covers the inspection of the home’s overall structure, like the foundation, windows, and doors. The house’s exterior is inspected to look for signs of rot, decay, or excavation issues. An overview of the roof condition is conducted to examine any signs of shingle, flashing, or fascia problems. A home inspection also covers the home’s interior, including framing, insulation, plumbing, HVAC, and electrical system. The kitchen is inspected to ensure that it is under current electrical code compliance. Major components of the home are examined, such as pipes and plumbing, appliances, and the interior walls and floors.

Who pays for the general home inspection cost?

The buyer is responsible for the general home inspection cost in most cases. The inspection report gives the buyer insight into the home’s condition and alerts them to any potential red flags. This report can also give buyers more negotiating power if they plan to make an offer. However, sellers may also choose to pay for a home inspection. In this case, most buyers choose to have their property inspected before it’s listed for sale. That way, they can make significant repairs and fixes before the home goes on the market.

Does the average price for a home inspection vary significantly according to the state?

The average cost of a home inspection is generally the same regardless of the state. However, prices may vary since labor costs are different in various parts of the country. Each state may also have its own unique set of procedures and regulations that affect the price. A general home inspection cost tends to be less expensive in Midwestern states than in areas like the Pacific Northwest. Home inspections in the Southwest tend to cost more than they do in the Southeast. On the low end, a home inspection costs approximately $300, and on the high end can cost as much as $600 in states like Washington and New Jersey, for example. In most cases, the cost is dictated by the total usable square footage of the home.

What factors can increase the average cost of a home inspection?

It typically costs more to inspect a larger home than an average or small-sized home. Homes with a basement or crawlspace have more square footage, translating to a higher cost to the buyer or seller. Another factor that can increase the average cost of a home inspection is if the inspector has to travel a long distance to get to the property. For example, you may have to pay more for the home inspection if you live in a rural area far away from city limits due to travel distance and time. Other factors that can increase a typical home inspection cost include special inspections that look for mold, asbestos, or radon testing. If you’re planning to buy a home in a busy real estate market, the demand for qualified inspectors will be higher, playing a role in the total cost. Older homes may need more attention than newer homes when performing an inspection. This can increase the price in some cases as well.

What factors can reduce the typical home inspection cost? 

If you are interested in buying a tiny home, condo, cottage, townhome, or bungalow, the average cost of a home inspection may be lower. Since these types of homes typically have a smaller amount of total square footage, the inspector won’t need to take as much time to complete the process. Newer homes with minimal issues may also cost less to inspect than older homes. Property with simple electrical and plumbing systems and minimal special features tend to cost less to inspect than homes with complex systems and more features.

What do sellers vs. buyers pay for during a home inspection?

In most cases, the buyer pays for a home inspection before they make an offer on a property that they’re interested in. However, sellers may offer to pay for the home inspection as an incentive to encourage buyers to purchase the home. Who pays for the home inspection is up to both the buyer and seller, and your real estate agent may negotiate who covers the cost when you are thinking about making an offer. Sellers can also opt to have a pre-listing inspection before putting their home on the market. This can help sellers identify significant issues and make necessary repairs for a smoother transaction once the house is up for sale.

Bottom Line 

If you’re looking to buy a home, getting a home inspection is a vital part of the process. Be sure to budget between $300 and $500 to pay for the inspection. Sellers may also want to consider getting a home inspection before listing their homes. If you’re a home inspector, visit our resources section to learn valuable information about the inspection process, software features, and much more.