When purchasing a home in Saskatoon, you are obviously investing a lot of money (or a lot of the bank's money) and you want to ensure that you are making a sound investment. That's why I always recommend any Buyer to hire a reputable Home Inspector to go through the property and uncover any potential problem areas. I want to emphasize "reputable" as all home inspectors were not created equal (same goes for Real Estate Agents). I personally have three inspectors that I recommend and I tell my clients why I recommend each of them. Price is always a question that gets asked, but again, the extra hundred dollars or so more is worth it in many cases. People don't often get to charge more and do terrible work and stay in business!
No matter how good a home inspector is, they all have their limitations. With technology getting better and more affordable, home inspectors are now able to "look inside walls" for potential moisture problems or hot/cold zones, but limitations still exist. They only have a few hours to uncover as many potential issues as they can. Some things are hidden from view that the inspector has no way of inspecting, such as hidden junction boxes, foundation cracks or furnace heat exchanger cracks. It is important to know that these limitations do exist and as you live in the home, you may find problems that the inspector missed.
In the home inspection on my current home, the inspector uncovered a few things that I was unaware of. Some were problems, some were actually good things, and some were just unknowns. For example, I was told that three windows were in need of proper window wells (problem); my attic insulation had been topped up recently to above minimum code (good thing); and some pot lights were added but he was unsure if they were done properly in respect to heat shields around the insulation (unknown). As I lived in the house for a few months, I noticed a few more things that he didn't uncover, such as some minor electrical bugs and a sprinkler issue. They are not perfect, but they give you some great information in your decision to buy that particular home.
Home inspectors can also be limited by the time of year. Sprinklers, a/c units and shingles generally can't be tested or inspected in the winter months so it's best to be aware that there could be issues there and take that into account. In the summer it's tough to determine the efficacy of the furnace in regards to hot/cold spots in the home.
I always recommend a home inspection to my clients, even if the property is in fantastic condition. You never know what an inspector could find and it also gives you a great 'to-do' list of general maintenance items that you will need to complete as a homeowner!