In the past decade, it seems that many prospective home buyers have toiled over studying the housing markets, the mortgage rates and even the stock market. All these elements fall outside a buyer’s control. However, there is always one reliable source of information a prospective home buyer can count on -- the home inspection.

HouseMaster, the most experienced home inspection franchise, notes that too many home buyers are still unaware of the importance of a thorough and proper home inspection. They spend months researching neighborhoods and mortgage providers, but the home inspection often becomes an afterthought when they make an offer on a prospective home.

Kathleen Kuhn, HouseMaster president and CEO, says “Buyers should take the time to research home inspection providers because there is a difference in training and qualifications. The information on an inspection report can influence the final price of the home and help a buyer shape realistic expectations for the home once they move in. So a good home inspector is a critical component in the process.”

Buyers should not balk at the idea of a home inspection that takes two hours or more, depending on the size of the home. This is the average time needed to review all the major elements of a home, and it’s the ideal time for a well-trained home inspector to show prospective homeowners how to locate and operate some key components. This is the time when buyers get a “backstage” tour of how the home works.

A buyer who is prepared with the right information, the right frame of mind, and a little patience can usually find a suitable property in any market. So if it is your time to become a homeowner, do the research and make the move!