Did you know that well over six million people sold their homes in January of 2021? Are you getting ready to sell your home?
There are a few things you can do to help your home sell fast and with fewer problems. A seller home inspection is one of those things.
Are you worried about getting a seller home inspection? Don’t be!
Here’s why you should have a seller home inspection and ten tips to ease your mind.
Why Have a Seller Home Inspection?
Most people wouldn’t dream of buying a home without getting an inspection first, and real estate agents recommend them to buyers.
A seller’s inspection helps you prepare for the buyer’s inspection.
It’s especially useful in identifying issues that could be a deal-breaker for a potential buyer. Getting issues fixed before the house goes on the market means there are no surprises for you or the buyer when it comes time for the buyer’s inspection.
Here’s how to prepare for your seller’s home inspection.
1. Be Aware the Inspection Is Thorough
A home inspection isn’t quick and easy but that’s a good thing! The inspector does a thorough job so he can find any potential problems with your property.
Expect the inspection to take at least 2-4 hours. If your home is old or large, the inspection can take longer. It may also take longer if you have a pool, attic, or crawlspace.
Have a list of questions to ask your inspector. These are the questions a buyer will ask, so it’s good to have the answers after your inspection.
2. Be Mentally Prepared
Do your own walk-through first. If you’ve been in your home a long time and you love it, you’re not viewing it with an objective eye.
Look at the home as objectively as possible. These are some things an inspector looks for:
- Water damage
- Roof damage
- Structural damage
- Faulty electrical wiring
- Plumbing problems
- HVAC function and age
Make your own list so you’re mentally prepared for the inspector’s detailed report. Code violations and safety issues are often deal-breakers, so be prepared to fix such issues before you put the house on the market.
An inspection feels intrusive because the inspector looks at everything. Don’t worry, they’re not judging your housekeeping.
The inspector will have a harder time doing her job if there’s a lot of clutter everywhere. It makes it more difficult to see the condition of the home.
If you’re storing boxes full of stuff stacked against walls inside closets, the inspector can’t inspect those areas. It’s not the inspector’s job to move furniture and boxes. That leads us to the next point…
4. Clear Access
Do make sure the inspector has access to everything. This includes the water heater, electrical panel, attic, basement, and crawlspace.
It’s not uncommon to cover an ugly electrical panel with a framed picture or a big piece of furniture. Make sure you get that out of the way before the inspector arrives.
5. Make Sure the Home Is Functional
If you’ve already moved, that makes some parts of the inspection much easier. No need to declutter or move furniture.
If the home is vacant, make sure the electricity, gas, and water are all on and working. If you’ve turned off the water, the inspector can’t tell if the faucets and toilets are working.
Home inspectors have a long checklist! It includes ceiling fans, lights, and appliances. Without electricity, he can’t tell if any of these necessities are in good working order.
6. Don’t Hide Issues
If you have a known issue, don’t try to hide it from the inspector. It’s better to have the issue found and addressed.
You’re legally required to disclose any known issues when you’re selling your home. If you don’t disclose something and the buyer has a problem later, they could come back looking for financial relief.
The law isn’t always on the buyer’s side but avoid the hassles by disclosing any known issues.
7. Routine Maintenance
As a homeowner, you should be doing regular maintenance on your home. If you haven’t been doing that, the inspector will definitely find a few things wrong!
Change your HVAC filter according to the owner’s manual, approximately every 1-3 months depending on the type of filter. Clean the intake and outflow vents to keep them free of dust.
Have the HVAC system inspected in the spring and in the fall. Save your inspection receipts so buyers can see you’ve kept up with maintenance.
Do you have a fireplace? Get the chimney inspected once a year and cleaned when necessary.
Open and close all windows a couple of times a year to make sure they’re working smoothly. Check the trim around the windows. If there’s water damage, have a professional replace the wood before it becomes a worse problem.
A home inspector will check all these things, so keep everything in good working order.
8. Take Your Pets Out During the Inspection
You love your pet, and he’s sweet and friendly but make sure he’s not home during the inspection. The inspector checks every square inch of your home, so you can’t lock the dog in a room to get him out of the way.
The inspector will check around the outside of the house too, so putting the pets in the yard isn’t ideal either.
9. Review the Report
Review the report with the inspector. Don’t forget your list of questions as mentioned in point one. Ask any other questions you may have.
10. Decide What Steps to Take
Did the inspector hand you a list of issues? Don’t panic. Your real estate agent can help you figure out which issues are most pressing.
You probably won’t need to fix everything on the list but you’ll be well prepared for the buyer’s inspection.
Ready for a Seller Home Inspection
Now you’re ready for a seller home inspection. It sounds like a lot of work but don’t let it intimidate you! The more prepared you are before you sell, the easier the selling process.
Do you have questions about the home inspection process? Are you ready to schedule a seller or buyer home inspection? Give us a call!