Contingences in a real estate contract protect you as a buyer from legal obligations that might ensnare you after you buy a home. A home inspection contingency is one of these provisions. It allows you a way to leave the contract without going through with the purchase in the event an inspection finds something wrong with the home.
Still, a seller will have a say in what the home inspection contingency will include. Be prepared to discuss with your seller the provisions you want in your inspection contingency. SFGate explains what buyers should have in their inspection contingencies.
A speedy exit plan
If a home inspection reveals major problems with the property, you may not want to deal with the hassle of repairing them. To that end, you will probably want the contingency to state that you can leave the contract quickly and recoup your earnest money in the process. However, your seller may ask for the right to fix problems before letting you out of the contract. You and your seller might compromise by allowing the seller to fix certain problems while allowing other problems to grant you an immediate exit.
A reasonable inspection period
Buyers are more likely to want a lengthy inspection period while sellers probably want it to go quickly. The problem with a quick time frame is that it limits your time to find the best inspector possible for your needs and budget. A reasonable inspection period will probably be something like 14 days. Insisting on a time frame like this may save you from a rushed inspection job that fails to uncover property problems.
A complete inspection
Be certain that your inspection contingency does not exclude parts of the home. Some contingencies only specify inspections of the plumbing or electrical wiring. If your inspection misses a part of the house, you might have mold or rot issues that you will not discover until you have completed your purchase. A good inspection contingency should make the whole property available for inspection.