For a number of years a home inspection has been a standard clause in an offer to purchase a home. But the importance of a pre-listing home inspection, one that’s done by the sellers before the home is put on the market, should not be forgotten.
A pre-home inspection protects the current homeowners as they prepare their home for sale. Should any deficiencies be found in the property during the inspection, the sellers have a couple of options.
First, they can choose to fix the issue before listing the home. Whether it’s a leaky roof or a crack in the foundation, fixing the issue immediately means you don’t have to list a home with a known issue, can do so for a higher asking price, and know that a home inspection done by the potential buyers won’t turn up anything.
Alternatively, the homeowners can choose to leave the issue, disclose it in the listing and drop the list price by the amount that it would cost to repair the issue. This is my least favourite of the two options because it leaves questions in the air.
First, a potential buyer looking for a home may not want to deal with the issue. As such they might by-pass even seeing the home if a known issue is left.
Secondly, when you drop the list price for the amount of the repair costs, you’re leaving room for discrepancy. What if the buyers’ contractor says it will cost more to repair than the sellers’ did?
Recently, a client completed a pre-listing inspection and although they had no initial cause for concern they did heed to my advice. We discovered a venting issue in the bathroom causing mold on the sheathing of the roof. We hired professionals to correct the problem before the house was listed.
Another client however, did not complete a pre-listing inspection and the buyer’s home inspector discovered significant mold in the attic caused from a poor installation of the gas fireplace in the second floor family room. The buyer asked to be released from the agreement.
I advise all my clients to invest in a pre-home inspection and repair any issues immediately, before I list the home. It means there won’t be any surprises on home inspection day and the sellers won’t have to worry about risking the sale.
For more information about a pre-inspection and for references to home inspectors in the region, please call me directly at 289-338-0767.