The primary purpose of a home inspection is to give a buyer information on any deficiencies that may exist in a home and to give information on the current condition of the home before closing. Some deficiencies mentioned in the report may be safety concerns and be a bit more critical than other items that are primarily cosmetic. A home inspector does not have the authority to insist that items be corrected. They can only make recommendations on corrections and sometimes suggest that a licensed professional should be consulted for further direction. Now, a mortgage company supplying financing for the home may require that some items to be corrected, but that is by their choice, not the home inspectors. Both the seller and the buyer can be better served by understanding that the home inspection is a bargaining tool at best. The inspection gives both the buyer and the seller negotiating points. Although a contract usually exists by the time of the inspection, it normally has a contingency stated giving the buyer time for due diligence in having an inspection done. This is when adjustments can be made if necessary and both parties agree.
If the inspection is being performed for refinancing purposes, the mortgage company has full authority to request items be corrected before closing if they so choose.