After your offer has been accepted and before closing, you need a home inspection. A home inspector’s job is to ensure the safety and quality of your investment including, but not limited to: the roof, plumbing, electrical components, appliances, heating & air conditioning systems, ventilation, windows, the fireplace & chimney, the foundation, the list goes on and on. Usually, agents make your offer contingent on a clean home inspection, meaning, you can still renegotiate the price of the home, ask the seller to cover the repair costs, or even walk away.

How to choose an inspector: Your agent should have a list for you, but realtors.com gives the following five tips to narrowing your choice down from there:

Qualifications: find out what is needed for your home inspection; each house is different based on the house’s age and location.

Sample Reports: ask the inspector for a sample report for the inspection. The more detailed, (usually) the better!

References: ask for some previous client’s contact information and see what they have to say.

Memberships: some inspectors belong to a national or state association of home inspectors which often means there is more training and education provided.

Errors and Omissions Insurance: What kind of liability insurance does the inspector or company have for after the inspection?

Asking to come along during the inspection is great, but don’t be surprised by any hands-on tactics like climbing on the roof or crawling around in the crawlspace, it’s their job! Your job is to make sure you check up on your inspector. Since you are technically hiring them, interview them with these five tips!