Things to Check Before Your House Inspection

Things to Check Before Your House InspectionMany times people ask what is the best way to “breeze through” a property or home inspection? The short answer? Have the property in tip-top shape! First impressions are an indicator of things to come. Many items in a typical inspection report are usually many low-cost repairs or maintenance issues that can throw a monkey wrench into the real estate transaction. Often the buyer will try to re-negotiate the selling price, expect repairs to be completed or ask for credits (money) for the buyer to make repairs just to keep the process moving along. I inform my clients that it is unreasonable to expect any property to be in perfect shape, but that doesn’t seem to stop some buyers from expecting the sellers to fix everything! Sellers are in a difficult position; the house needs to go! Sellers do not want to lose a potential buyer. With a glut of inventory in the real estate market, every small obstacle can be the difference a buyer walking away or a successful real estate transaction.

Taking a proactive approach is key. A few common repairs are usually in order. Simple things such as changing burned out light bulbs. Servicing and installing a new air filter in your forced air furnace, cleaning the gutters, make sure the garage overhead door opener is properly adjusted and infrared sensors working, testing and replacing any defective GFCI – (ground fault circuit interrupter). Cleaning A/C condensing (outside) unit. These items are some common issues. The current occupant/owner may not be aware of issues that can derail a smooth inspection. I often discover an obvious problem by just opening a hatch, looking into a crawl space or attic area. Any evidence of moisture stains, wet spots, or if there are water leaks, these “leaking” problems always need to be repaired immediately. Nothing can destroy a structure quicker than undiscovered moisture related deficiencies. Everyone wants the inspection process to go smoothly. The buyers have invested a lot of time, energy and money to get to this point. The seller want to sell. The inspector has to inform the client about the true condition of the property. Good news is always much easier to communicate than having to inform the client of any discovered major defects or to report the many small “maintenance items” that need attention. There is no joy in giving bad news to anyone.

A properly maintained property will produce fewer problems, less stress, and provide a safe home for he owners’ family. Sellers can help the whole process to smoothly, usually with very little expense. All homes have issues, do not let “small expense repairs” become large obstacles in the deal.