Home sellers frequently asked questions
Q. Why should I get a home inspection before I have an offer?
A. To avoid unpleasant surprises. A seller can exercise more control if they know what the issues will be before they are discovered by the buyer’s inspector.
Q. Do I have to fix everything listed on the report before I sell the house?
A. No. Frequently sellers fix nothing. Before the sale, a seller can decide to adjust the price one way or the other, make the repair, or not. Knowing the issues beforehand allows the seller some strategic flexibility that is not there once an offer is on the table. After an offer has been accepted the seller may have less flexibility, depending on the results of the inspection and the wishes of the buyer.
Q. Do I need to do anything special before the inspection?
A. The inspector will need access to the electrical panel, the furnace, the crawl space and attic access hatches and will likely run a cycle in the dishwasher. He will not put the dishes away; sorry. He will be looking at the supply and drain plumbing under the sinks. Removing personal property to allow access to all these items should be performed by the seller before the inspection.
Landscaping should be trimmed back from the outside of the house to allow the inspector access and visibility.
Keys should be provided for locked gates or access doors.
If defective, dangerous or unusual conditions exist, a note should be left for the inspector.
Q. Do I need to leave the property during the inspection?
A. If your buyers are showing up for the inspection, they may feel less uncomfortable if the seller is not there.
Q. How long does and inspection take to complete?
A. Generally, 2-4 hours on site, depending on the property condition and the attention to detail being exercised by the inspector.
Q. What about pets?
A. Pets should be removed or secured before the inspection. It is easy for animals to get out of the house when people are coming and going and obnoxious pets can add to the stress level of the buyers. Pet behavior can be eratic when the owner is gone and strangers are present.
Q. How do I choose and inspector to perform an inspection before I list the property?
A. Like any purchase, you should try to get the most for your money. Do not look for the cheapest price, because there is a very good chance that you will receive the cheapest service for your money. A personal reference is almost always a good lead to a good inspector. Does the inspection service stand behind their inspections, in case any thing is missed, or if you have questions later?