How picky is the inspection?
It’s been a while so I thought it was time for some Q&A. Today, the focus is on home inspections.
Q: How picky is the home inspection?
A: That depends on the home inspector, how he delivers the information and the buyer. Not all home inspectors are created equal and neither are their reports. Some report every single thing that they find no matter how small or insignificant. While others take a more balanced approach with their reporting. Every home (even new construction) will have a list of things that the inspector points out. There is no such thing as a perfect home.
It’s not only what’s reported, but it also matters how it’s reported. Some inspectors are great at scaring the bejeezus out of you when it is completely unnecessary. It’s in the language that they use and how well they explain the problem to the buyer. An experience buyer’s agent is helpful in these situations because they can bring some common sense to the situation.
Some buyers are easily frightened. So, it’s best to set the expectations upfront. Let the buyers know that the seller will only consider repairs that are health or safety issues. Be as transparent as possible with the property condition disclosure and make sure every potential buyer has a copy prior to the agreement. Be proactive on making repairs before you place the home on the market. This will save you headaches in the middle of a deal when you are pressed for time.
Q: Is everything negotiable?
A: Yes, everything is negotiable. That means the buyer can ask for the world and the seller can say no to everything. Getting to the closing table requires an agreement from all parties to satisfy the inspection contingency. Always work towards that goal within reason.
Q: Can we fix the little things ourselves?
A: If you want to fix little things yourself, it is best to do that before listing the home for sale. And only on those items that you are qualified to repair. Most home inspectors are going to recommend that the repairs are made by a contractor or qualified technician.
Q: What options do we have to resolve the inspection?
A: You have three options. First, the seller can refuse to make any repairs. Second, the seller can agree to make all or some of the requested repairs. Last, the seller can offer closing costs or a price reduction in lieu of the requested repairs. In Tennessee, remember that all parties must agree in order to move forward and they must put that agreement in writing during the resolution period. Once the inspection resolution period has expired, so has the purchase agreement.
What concerns do you have about buying or selling your home?