Michigan home inspections may differ depending on the loan you are applying for. This guide will walk you through the different types of Michigan home inspections and their requirements.

Are Home Inspections Required in Michigan? 

Unlike many other states, home inspections in Michigan are an optional part of the home buying process at this time. 

When applying for a mortgage to buy or refinance your home, your service provider will ask for an appraisal of the property you want to buy. 

This appraisal has two parts:

  1. A Valuation: the appraiser will estimate the market value of the home in question.
  2. An Assessment: this is usually a general overview of the quality of the house.  

Not every lender requires a home inspection. VA and USDA loans, for example, only require an appraisal. Michigan home inspections are not necessary for such loans to be approved.  

However, getting a home inspected before you buy is always a good idea. A home inspection gives you peace of mind that the house is safe and habitable and will stand the test of time. It also lets you know of any issues that need attention – before they become emergencies.

Homebuyers are not the only ones who want to know your home is safe and sound. As long as you hold a mortgage, your lender also has a vested interest in your home. This is why certain types of home loans in Michigan require a home inspection as part of the loan evaluation process.

VA Home Inspection Requirements

Veteran Affairs loans are available to active and veteran service personnel and their surviving spouses. 

To qualify for this loan, the house in question must:

  • have a market value that meets or exceeds the loan amount.
  • meet the VA’s minimum property requirements (MPRs).

Note that the appraisal is not as in-depth as a VA inspection. (If you’re not sure of the difference, check out our blog on home inspections vs. appraisals.) And while Michigan home inspections aren’t necessary before you are granted a loan, it is in your best interest to have one. 

A VA home inspection will ensure the house is structurally sound and hazard-free. It will also assure you of the longevity of the property.

Va Home Inspection Checklist

During a VA home inspection, the inspector will look at the following aspects of the house. 

  • The roof. They’ll check for moss growth and look closely at its shingles, flashing, etc.
  • The house’s exterior. Porch, patio, deck, siding, flashing, and trim will be checked.
  • Gutters and downspouts.
  • Floors, walls, doors, and windows. 
  • Ceilings. Water stains in the ceilings are often a sign of a leaky roof. 
  • Attic and insulation.
  • Plumbing. Toilets, bathrooms, and hot water pipes are checked for possible leakages.
  • Electrical connections. Are wires hanging out? Are all the switches and outlets working effectively?
  • Smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. 
  • The condition of the stairs, ceilings, and railings.
  • The heating, ventilation, and Air conditioning system (HVAC). 
  • Exterior threats. This includes drainage issues, grading issues, and plants and trees around the house.
  • The wall structure.
  • The foundation and floor structure.
  • Pest infestation and damages.

 In addition to a home inspection, VA lenders also like to see water, radon, and mold testing. 

USDA Rural Development Inspection Requirements 

US Department of Agriculture (USDA) loans are available to people buying homes in approved rural regions. 

Because the U.P. is considered a rural area, many homes in the U.P. are eligible for USDA loans.

Houses eligible for this loan are also only required to pass an appraisal. As part of the appraisal, the lender will also check that the house meets the minimum property requirements. 

While not compulsory, a USDA home inspection is strongly advised. It might cost a little extra but think of the added security it provides you as the buyer.  

In addition to the VA inspection checklist, rural development home inspection requires wells and septic systems to be at least 100 feet from the house.

FHA Home Inspection Requirements

Federal Housing Administration (FHA) backed loans require homes to go through an appraisal and an FHA inspection.

FHA Loan Inspection Checklist 

The FHA inspector will thoroughly inspect the home. Some of the things they will look out for include:

  • The electrical system and wiring. They will check that there are no exposed wires.
  • The condition of the windows and doors.  
  • The toilets and sinks.   
  • Adequate ventilation. All rooms must be adequately ventilated, including the bathrooms and kitchen.
  • No part of the property must encroach into the properties beside it. In the same vein, neighboring properties must not encroach into the home you’re planning to buy. 
  • The presence of lead paint.
  • Kitchen appliances. All kitchen appliances must be in working order.
  • There should be room for storing, preparing and serving food. 
  • Sewer system. The sewer must connect to the city sewer or an operable septic system.
  • Pest control. There should be no signs of pest infestation.
  • Garbage and debris should be disposed of properly. 

They will also inspect the:

  • Interior and exterior walls.
  • Roof (roofs must have three layers at most).
  • Chimney.
  • Stairs and railings.
  • Siding.
  • Swimming pool (if applicable). It must be in good working condition and follow local regulations.
  • Heating Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC) system. 
  • Water heater, plumbing, and drainage.

Michigan Home Inspections You Can Trust

Michigan home inspections are not required for every loan type. 

However, scheduling a home inspection will assure you of the house’s structural integrity. It will also help you spot possible hazards before closing the deal.

If the house you’re interested in doesn’t pass the appraisal or inspection, you could:

  • Talk to the seller to fix the home inspection issues.
  • Negotiate with the seller to beat down the price to account for the faults.
  • Continue house hunting.

U.P. Home Inspection LLC offers home inspection services to homeowners and individuals looking to buy property in the U.P. of Michigan. We are very familiar with the ins and outs of the different types of home loans and can tailor your inspection to suit your loan type. 

Questions about home loan inspections? Call Rich today at (906)360-3879. Or, book your appointment online here.  

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