With such a lengthy and emotionally fraught process as buying or selling a home, it can be easy for details to slip through the cracks. It is important, though, for buyers to find out whether those cracks are superficial or foundational. According to Massachusetts state law, there is no legal requirement for sellers to tell buyers about property problems. For this reason, it is vital that home buyers in Massachusetts get a home inspection performed before the final purchase in order to get the full picture of the residential property they are considering to buy.

The American Society of Home Inspectors delineates all of the requirements a Massachusetts home inspector must have in order to legally work. Primarily, the home inspector must be licensed to work in the state of Massachusetts, with mandatory license renewals completed every other year. This licensure entails earning a high school level education, passing the National Home Inspector Examination, having a licensed home inspection supervisor and performing at least 25 home inspections while supervised by another licensed home inspector.

The home inspector should examine the main areas of the residence in question, in order to gain a full understanding of the issues which may not be obvious to the buyer. These can include, but are not limited to:

  • Heating and cooling systems
  • Foundations and the basement
  • Roofing and the attic
  • Plumbing and electrical systems
  • Walls and insulation

Further inspections may be necessary for particular areas of concern, such as mold, asbestos or radon. While the home inspector may note signs of these dangers in a preliminary report, concerned buyers can opt for more in-depth inspections before purchasing the residence.