Ready for Inspection?


When buying or selling a home there are many key elements to the transaction. Today I want to talk about the Seller’s nightmare…”THE INSPECTION”.

Ideally you would think it would be the buyer’s nightmare. The buyer is new to the home, meanwhile the seller has lived there for some time and should know the condition of the home. A whole home inspection is not always required, but from this agent, it’s HIGHLY recommended. Sellers use the property disclosure as a tool of communication from the seller to the buyer. The seller also should be as honest and upfront on the property disclosure about known defects.  However, what if they do not know about defects or are hiding something. To me, the inspections should be way scarier for the buyer because of all the unknowns. A good agent will let the buyers know what to expect, in hopes that the inspector (who is doing their job) does not scare or intimidate them.

From a seller’s perspective, what do you have to be afraid of? I can tell you what I prepare my seller’s for…

First, an inspection is going to take place. Whether it’s a professional company or a prideful handy uncle. A home inspection isn’t a pass/fail. It merely describes items that need minor, major repair or replacement. So what can we as seller’s do to be prepared?

Here are a couple of items that may help you the seller be better prepared for an inspection:

Repair missing or loose railings on deck and steps

Recaulk around windows and doors

Replace missing or damaged shingles

Ensure downspouts are intact and water drains away from the house

Trim trees and shrubs away from the roof

Repair any broken or cracked windows

Recaulk around bathtub and kitchen/bathroom sinks

Repair leaky faucets and fixtures and unclog slow drains

Ensure exhaust fans are in working order

Have the furnace or other major appliances serviced

Make sure garbage disposal, ice maker, other appliances are in good working order

Have any service contracts, manuals and warranties handy.

These obviously aren’t all items that an inspector is going to look for. This is merely a small checklist to get your started. Special thanks to Pillar to Post for their input on home inspections. The buyer may not be all knowing. They may be relying solely on the inspector. Items that aren’t a big deal to you, doesn’t mean it will not be a big deal to your buyer.

Clearly you’ve done a great job preparing yourself to list your home. The buyer left there with a great feeling. Getting a contract is a better feeling. Both of these are a form of communication between the two parties. Buyers judge the sellers. You want them to see the care you took of your home. The presentation at the home inspection will be another form of communication. From the time you list to the time you close, communication is key. As always feel free to contact me with questions or concerns. Be prepared, not scared.

Tom Taulbee