Buying a house in Toronto is the largest purchase you’re likely ever going to make. So when you decide to spend your hard earned savings, it’s best to protect yourself wherever you can. This means when making an offer on a house, you’ll likely need a home inspection. We’re about to tell you why you should, how it’s done, what it costs, and why you need to be extra careful with home inspections in Ontario.


Home inspections are a standard piece to the home buying puzzle. Whether it’s a new home or a very old home, having a home inspection in Ontario offers you some peace of mind. Home inspections will help to identify any hidden issues within the house that may cost you post-sale. Beyond the financial costs affiliated with these potential repairs, they will also ensure the property is safe.

An Ontario home inspection checklist should include, but not limited to:
• roofing
• electrical
• plumbing
• insulation
• heating
• structural
• water damage

These are just some of the main areas a home inspector will pay attention to during their inspection. In some cases should they have cause for concern regarding certain areas, your home inspector may recommend getting a follow up inspection with a specialist.

Your inspector will be looking at all of the items on the Ontario home inspection checklist above. Not only are they looking for things that need to be dealt with immediately, but they can also provide you with a list of things that may need some attention in the not-so-distant future. Typically, they will provide in their follow up report the cost to fix said items and the timeline in which you should aim to have these repaired by.


In some cases, a seller will already have a home inspection done prior to listing, but as a buyer you are generally the one who foots the bill. The cost of home inspections Ontario will vary depending on the size of the home. In general, it’s best to budget anywhere from $300 to $500 for an inspection but it is a worthy investment.


This will depend on the size of the property, but can generally take two to three hours.


While it’s not mandatory to attend a home inspection on a property you’re interested in buying, it is in your best interest to do so. This way, your home inspector can point out any issues or repairs that are needed and give you the opportunity to ask any questions that may arise.

What Typically Fails A Home Inspection?

Many issues may come up during a home inspection. While minor cosmetic defects or repairs may be reflected on the report, these are not likely to fail a home inspection in Toronto. The problems that may typically cause a home inspection to fail are major issues that are expensive to resolve such as, problems with the roofing, mold, foundation and others.

We list some of the severe problems below that commonly fail a home inspection:


If the roofing is old or rundown, then it’s a problem that the homeowner likely needs to fix before the inspection. A severely damaged roof may cause a home inspection in Toronto to fail. The home inspector may also list broken or damaged shingles in their report – look out for these.


If a home has hidden mold, then the inspector will be able to sniff it out. Mold is caused by excess moisture, which in turn may be due to a leak or drainage problem. Since extensive mold infestations are costly to treat, home inspectors always look out for this issue.

Drainage Issues

Problems such as drainage issues and improper grading may cause a home inspection to fail. Since improper grading typically leads to many issues such as, leaky basements, mildew, spongy soil, and others it’s a problem to watch out for, during a home inspection in Toronto. In a worst case scenario, it may even cause the foundation to shift.

Defective Foundation

A damaged foundation is definitely a problem that can cause a home inspection to fail and with good reason. If it’s serious, it’s an expensive problem to address. If the house has doors and windows that stick, sloping floors, or horizontal cracks in the exterior foundation, the foundation may be faulty.


This is where things can get tricky. As of right now, there’s no formal licensing required for Ontario Home Inspectors and just about anyone claiming to be a home inspector is able to do so. A home inspection certificate can easily be obtained through online courses but does not guarantee their abilities or real-life training.

The biggest home inspection tips for buyers would be to protect yourself. The best way to do that is to ensure you’re working with a qualified inspector, refer to the Canadian Association of Housing and Property Inspectors or in Ontario specifically, Ontario Association of Home Inspectors.

It’s worth noting here that there have been efforts to put more regulations in place regarding home inspections Ontario. In 2017 the Home Inspections Act went to legislation, which would require minimum standards as well as proper education and training for all Ontario home inspectors.


When buying a Toronto condo, the comparable to a home inspection is getting the status certificate of the building. A status certificate will provide an in-depth overview of a condo building’s management policies, financial statements, the general health of the building as well as any particulars for the individual condo unit. You can learn more on condo status certificates here.

After your home inspection in Ontario, you should receive a thorough report that outlines all of the issues both pertinent and upcoming, images of important areas, and tips for home maintenance with respect to this specific property. Depending on the outcome of your home inspection, you can discuss with your real estate agent if the value of your offer is still in line with what you’ve learned from the home’s overall health and whether there are any things that can work in your favour for negotiations. Looking to buy or sell in Toronto? Our home and condo listings can be found here. No matter what service you’re looking for, we’ve got you covered. Book a Call!