Unless you want to sell your home soon and profit from that sale, it is a better option to forego hiring professional home inspectors and do the home inspection on your own. Remember that your home will deteriorate as the years pass by but with vigilant DIY inspections you can ensure that incurred damage can be addressed as soon as possible steering you clear from expensive major repairs. In order to make home inspection a breeze, here is a list of things you can check and fix on your own or with the help of professionals. This is to closely guard your home from progressive damage. Ready your notepad and pen for taking down possible problems you encounter as you go around your property. Wear some gloves and carry with you a flashlight and screw drivers (Flat and Philipps).
You can start your home inspection outside and work your way inside. Go up your roof first and inspect for shingle damage like curling and blistering. Algae are also a common problem that can easily get out of hand fast. You may want to note this as urgent. This is easily addressed by putting in zinc strips on the ridge where the algae is thriving. While on the roof you can check on the gutters. Clogged gutters are the number one reason why water leaks on the basement. It can also cause ceiling damage.
Check the caulk around your windows and doors. Caulk stops water from seeping inside. When you see the caulk is damaged replace it as soon as possible. Water is meant to be resisted and when caulk trouble is neglected, you can be sure that water damage will start creeping inside your house and cause bigger damage to your walls and paint job.
Check also for the bushes and plants outside your house. Be sure that the branches do not overextend to your walls so that squirrels and other critters cannot use it as bridge to your home. Overgrown shrubs can encourage mildew on your exterior walls and can also make it easy for burglars to hide while in the process of breaking into your home.
Now that you are done inspecting your house from the outside it is time to get inside. As usual start from the top going down so go first to the attic. First of all check the trusses. If it has been tampered with (sawed off to make more room), note it down and call a structural engineer as soon as you finish your rounds. While in the attic use your flashlight to find traces of leaking around chimneys and skylights.
Another common issue inside the house is a wobbling toilet bowl. When shaking starts be sure to write it down for repairs. When neglected this can cause water damage on the floor (water leaks on every flush) and can mean expensive repairs later on. Also check for the electrical wiring in the bathroom. While past wiring may be enough to take care of one light bulb, often times it cannot carry the load of hair dryers commonly used today. Call an electrician to fix this. This steers you clear from overheating and risk of fire.
Your last stop is on the basement. You can poke around the wood with ice pick and if you see weak spots this can mean rotting. This is often validated when the floor it is supporting above is slightly sagging. Get the rotten wood replaced as soon as possible. Check for termite problems. When you see tubes running through the wood, break the tubes and check if there are termites inside or if the tube gets repaired when you come back the next day. Call an exterminator quickly and save your home from an all out termite infestation.