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Sellers: Make Things Easy On Your Home Inspector By Doing A Few Simples Tasks Ahead of Time

Sellers: Make Things Easy On Your Home Inspector By Doing A Few Simples Tasks Ahead of Time

Does it pass muster? Home inspectors exist for all kinds of reasons – to make sure the house and all its systems function, to tell you, as the seller of the home, what works and what doesn’t work, or to disclose to a prospective buyer what, if any, issues may need their attention either now or in the future. Oh. And lenders care about it too, since they often have a lot of skin in the game.

Realtor’s Ana Durrani acknowledges that the home inspection can be a particularly stressful part of the homebuying process for buyers, but the equally anxious seller might be waiting with bated breath for the results as well. “The buyer is typically responsible for scheduling and paying for the home inspection, but if the house is revealed to have major issues, the seller can be on the hook for repairs—or could lose the deal entirely,” says Durrani.

Home inspection issues such as termite or mold damage can mean either an outlay of cash or a new negotiation (credits, concessions) on the part of the seller to make things right with the buyer. The worst-case scenario is when the buyer is truly turned off by the home inspection results. If they agreed to the inspection as a condition of the sale, the buyer can walk – a seller’s worst nightmare. That’s why many Realtors agree that it may be unwise to wait for a buyer to initiate a home inspection, routinely advising sellers to have one performed to prepare to list their home. “While it’s not required, a pre-inspection of your home could make the process of selling go quicker,” says Durrani. “You can disclose to buyers any problems your home inspector uncovered and how you’ve addressed them. You can also sidestep major negotiations during escrow.”

For sellers not keen on doing a pre-inspection, it’s still a good idea to at least have the home’s major systems (i.e., HVAC, electric, plumbing) inspected. These systems are costly to replace, and inspecting them can – at a minimum – provide some peace of mind to potential buyers.

What should you do to prepare for the inspector? Two things. (1) Clean up any clutter. (2) Then get out of their way. While the inspector will be looking at more than just the cosmetic state of your home, it doesn’t hurt to make it look its best. You can make it even easier for the inspector if he or she has unfettered access to every part of your home. If your attic access is in a closet or garage, clear any items that would impede access. They will want to scrutinize the garage, roof, attic and/or basement, electrical service panel, and under sinks. Doing all of the above offers the inspector the impression that, as a homeowner, you kept up with everyday maintenance. “Let the professional do their job and stay out of the way, but be approachable should they need something,” says Donna Deaton, a real estate agent with Re/Max Victory + Affiliates in Liberty Township, OH.

Realtor, TBWS

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