By Lisa Harrison Rivas
For most people, buying a house is the biggest investment they’ll ever make. People often spend months searching for their dream home, and when they finally find what appears to be it, they can’t wait to buy it. But we all know looks can be deceiving, so before the packing starts, it’s a good idea to get a home inspection.
Here’s what you can expect from a home inspection.
An inspection is usually done after a house is under contract, meaning a signed offer has been accepted. If you are working with a real estate agent, he or she can provide a list of licensed inspectors for you to choose from. The house will be inspected for structural defects and pests (crawling critters, not annoying family members).
All lenders require a Wood Destroying Insect Report on pre-existing homes before funds will be advanced for the sale. The report will state if the home has an infestation or damage from a previous infestation and if the house has been previously treated for termites.
Sheds are a haven for termites, so they also should be inspected. One client I was working with had an old shed on a property torn down at the buyer’s request. Sure enough, the shed was full of termites and the house was also infested. The shed was removed, and the seller paid for the termite treatment, which was not cheap.
Keep in mind the Wood Destroying Insect Report must be done within 30 days of closing, so it’s a good idea to have this inspection done last in case there’s a delay in closing.
After the structure of the house is examined, the inspector will issue a report on the roof, foundation, heating and cooling system, electrical system, plumbing and other visible defects. Common issues inspectors find include damage from moisture, aging roofs, heating/cooling defects, termite damage, and improperly installed insulation.
Cracked or shifting foundations also are common in South Texas. I had another client who had found what she thought was the perfect home in the perfect neighborhood. The home looked flawless at the showing. An offer was made and accepted, and she was anxious to move forward with the deal. At last, she would be getting the home she had been waiting for. But then, the inspection report came back and it revealed that the beautiful house in the perfect neighborhood had a cracked foundation. This is a perfect example of looks being deceiving and the precise reason a good licensed inspector is crucial.
In older homes, especially in rural areas, the wiring can be a problem. It’s not uncommon for inspectors to find it to be outdated. In general, they will check to see if the house has sufficient electrical capacity needed to power today’s appliances safely.
Once the inspector finishes the report, you and your agent will receive a copy. Decisions will be made about which items need to be addressed before moving forward with the deal. The buyer’s agent will send repair requests to the seller’s agent, and both parties should sign off on which items will be repaired. If you are the seller, make sure you keep all your repair receipts. If you are the buyer, make sure you ask to see them during the final walk-through.
The long summers in South Texas means air conditioning systems are running most of the year, so potential buyers often request that sellers pay for routine maintenance on the heating and cooling system before closing on the house.
And while it might be tempting to save some cash and have your uncle with a tool belt look at the system, I’d recommend that, unless he’s licensed, you politely decline the offer and hire a licensed professional, in which the state requires. Inspectors say a lot of the problems they see are caused by unlicensed Mr. Fix-its.
The buyer, unless he or she is financing with a VA loan, usually pays for both the general structural inspection and the Wood Destroying Insect Report, but like anything else, this is negotiable. The cost varies depending on the size of the house, but expect to spend from $300 to $500 for the structural report. A Wood Destroying Insect Report will cost around $160. Depending on the inspector, these costs can be paid upfront or at closing.
So now you know what to expect from a home inspection.
Lisa Harrison Rivas is a Realtor with Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Don Johnson, Realtors. Contact Lisa at 210-380-9006 or email@example.com
Getting Blacks Back To Work
Unemployed African Americans Can Upload Their Resumes to BlackJobs.com
The global COVID-19 pandemic has all Americans feeling financially burdened, but more African Americans are being affected as there are currently more than 20 million unemployment claims across the country. Experts say that Black unemployment could eventually be as high as 30%, but one web site, BlackJobs.com, is helping to solve the problem.
The web site easily allows qualified job seekers to connect with employers who are committed to diversity hiring. The site allows users to easily upload the resumes for free, and even link their resume with their existing LinkedIn account.
But are there really jobs available?
Yes! Although there has been an exponential loss of jobs in the past month, there are still new job opportunities being created daily. In fact, the demand for work-from-home professionals has skyrocketed due to social distancing mandates. There are also many new customer support-related positions on the rise, as well as jobs in healthcare, higher education, off-site IT, delivery services, etc.
BlackJobs.com, which is free to use for those who are unemployed, is an immediate solution to the drastic loss of jobs and Black unemployment in general.
Microsoft to Partner With Huge HBCU Hiring Event For Software and IT Professionals
Nationwide — HBCU Connect and Microsoft have partnered to offer an amazing opportunity to software engineering professionals. On February 13th, the two companies will host a special Recruitment and Networking Reception in Dallas, Texas for HBCU grads turned tech professionals interested in working for Microsoft.
At the event, participants will learn more about Microsoft and converse with Microsoft recruiters and hiring managers with the unique opportunity for candidates to land next day interviews on the 14th followed by same day job offers!
Event Date: Thursday, February 13th, 2020 – with next day interviews and offers on the 14th
Event Time: 5:30pm to 8:30pm
Event Location: Dallas, Texas – Exact location provided with confirmed registration
Microsoft has hundreds of openings for software engineers and technical program managers, so whether you are a coder or have progressed into program management with a background in software engineering, you really need to make it to this event! Microsoft offers a great work atmosphere, great pay and benefits, crazy room for advancement, and a progressive work environment.
The team behind the event is Microsoft “COSINE”, which stands for Core Operating System and Intelligent Edge technology. As a part of the Microsoft Cloud + AI division, the COSINE organization delivers technologies and solutions that establish the OS platform foundation across Microsoft’s everchanging product lines.
The COSINE organization within Microsoft would like to hire as many Software Engineers and Technical Program Managers as possible from the HBCU Connect hiring event. So, if you have experience developing code in C++, Java, C# or other modern programming languages, or you used to write code but now have years of experience as a program manager, you should register to attend this event.
While most of the opportunities will be at Microsoft’s headquarters in Redmond, WA, Microsoft offers a very competitive salary and relocation package for potential employees. Microsoft also has a thriving community of Black professionals, many of which are part of their long-standing employee resource group called Blacks at Microsoft (BAM).
This is a very unique opportunity for software professionals to get their foot in the door at Microsoft.
How to register:
Space is limited! Submit your resume and contact information at www.hbcuconnect.com/resumes or email your resume to firstname.lastname@example.org
Companies interested in discussing the execution of similar events, and/or leveraging HBCU Connect in support of their diversity hiring strategies, should contact us at email@example.com.
For individuals interested in attending future events hosted by HBCU Connect, register at www.hbcuconnect.com/resumes.
Leader In Fostering Diversity
TV ONE NAMED AMONG TOP COMPANIES FOR PEOPLE OF COLOR BY COUNTRY’S LEADING ORGANIZATION FOR DIVERSITY IN THE COMMUNICATIONS INDUSTRY
TV One was recently named one of the Top Companies of 2019 for People of Color by the National Association for Multi-ethnicity in Communications (NAMIC), the premiere organization focusing on cultural diversity, equity and inclusions in the communications industry. As announced by NAMIC, TV One was among the top five programmers and is recognized as a leader in fostering diversity and inclusion in the cable and communications industry. The findings were gleaned from the 2019 NAMIC AIM Report which ranked the top five operators and top five programmers. “It is an honor for TV One to be recognized by NAMIC as a leading company for diversity,” said TV One General Manager Michelle Rice. “We strongly believe diversity and inclusion are key business imperatives that cultivate a positive work environment for our employees to thrive. We will continue to invest and employ programs and strategies to retain and recruit both a dynamic and diverse workforce.”
Other top programmers ranked by NAMIC include AMC Networks, CBS Corporation, NBCUniversal and Revolt Media & TV; top operators include Altice USA, Charter Communications, Comcast, Cox Communications and Mediacom Communications Corporation.
“Building a diverse talent pool not only is the right thing to do, but also is essential for driving bottom-line results,” said NAMIC President and CEO A. Shuanise Washington. “These 10 companies are leading the way in adopting successful diversity and inclusion strategies that ensure we embrace differences and more accurately reflect the representation of our industry stakeholders as well as today’s workforce.”
Funded by the Walter Kaitz Foundation and conducted by Mercer, the survey captured organizational workforce demographics, diversity practices, non-traditional employee benefits, and other indicators of corporate commitment to diversity and inclusion. The survey also gathered information that enabled the creation of industry-wide Internal Labor Market (ILM) maps showing the workforce dynamics – hires, promotions, and exits – of people of color in the industry. Data is being used to determine the steps the industry needs to take over the next five years to recruit and retain diverse talent.
Twenty-one organizations participated in the survey, which represents an estimated 75.5 percent of the cable and communications industry’s workforce.
The full report is available at http://namic.com.
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