Selling your home? Then you know the challenge of getting a fair price for it. One thing you must go through is a home inspection.
But should you, or the buyer do it?
There are differences between a regular home inspection and a pre-listing home inspection. A bad home inspection report can cause you a lot of trouble. You might be able to avoid most of it by doing your own pre-listing home inspection.
So, how does it work?
In this article, we are taking a look at the pros and cons of a pre-listing home inspection.
Home Inspection Basics
A home inspection aims to identify any and all issues a home might face. This kind of inspection falls under the banner of due diligence when buying or selling residential real estate.
During a home inspection, a professional home inspector will visit the property and look for a number of issues. These include:
- Plumbing issues
- Electrical issues
- Structural integrity
- Basement and crawlspace humidity
- Mold and mildew issues
- Remaining useful life of appliances and home systems
- Roof and chimney issues
- Door, window, and trim issues
- Pest infestations
There are also some specialized tests that a home inspector may perform. These include tests for the presence of radon, lead, and other hazardous chemicals.
Depending on how the home inspection goes, the price of the house can go up or down. Buyers may even walk away from a house if the inspection fails to meet their standards.
Here is where a pre-listing home inspection comes in. With a pre-listing home inspection, the seller hires their own professional home inspector before they list the house for sale. This is done either directly or through a real estate agent.
It’s not possible to identify all issues without the help of a professional home inspector. For example, a tiny leak or just a patch of mold may underlie a big problem with your plumbing.
During the inspection, the professional will look each part of the house and add notes in their checklist. The inspection typically starts with looking for signs of humidity and checking out the state of plumbing, heating, and air conditioning systems. Issues with these systems are often an indication that there is a bigger problem at hand.
A pre-listing home inspection comes with several advantages, but it costs time and money. Let’s see why you should consider one below.
Reasons for a Pre Listing Home Inspection
First of all, a pre-listing home inspection will help the seller, the buyer, and any real estate agents involved get the most out of the deal. By knowing the state of the property in advance, real estate agents have more flexibility to market the house to the right buyers.
With a pre-listing home inspection, owners get more time to repair their property and increase the expected value before listing the property. Moreover, when sellers do their own inspection, they are free to choose how to repair their property. They are also free to choose the home inspector.
A pre-listing home inspection will also help sellers identify the actual expected price for their property. This can help save a lot of time from negotiations with potential buyers.
As we have seen above, such an inspection will also ensure that buyers don’t walk away just before the purchase because of some unexpected issue. As part of the due diligence process, buyers need a full disclosure of the home’s condition.
Remember that every house has its own quirks and issues. By inspecting it in advance, you can identify every pain point and take steps to address it. Buyers will do their own home inspection before buying, and if they find issues they might ask for a lower price or just cancel the deal.
By addressing those issues in advance, you make sure that buyers will not find any unpleasant surprises during their own inspection. This can speed up the whole process.
Pre-Listing Home Inspection Drawbacks
A pre-listing home inspection is not without disadvantages. The most obvious drawback is that sellers have to shoulder the cost for the pre-listing inspection. Inspections take time and effort, and these come out of the seller’s pocket.
While an inspection may help you get a better deal out of your house, not all sellers can afford one. You may have to pay more than $1,000 for a general home inspection, depending on the size of your house.
Moreover, depending on where you live, you might have to disclose everything your pre-listing inspection finds to potential buyers. This depends a lot on your individual situation.
If you can afford to repair the house in time, then disclosure will not affect you much. However, if you list the property with the problems still there, it may be more difficult to sell.
Finally, with pre-listing home inspections, your home will get two rounds of inspection. Whether this is a good thing or not is entirely up to you.
Covering All Your Pre-Listing Home Inspection Needs in Northeast Ohio
Now that you know the benefits of a pre-listing home inspection, you can make an informed decision about your own property. With more than 30 years of experience, Scott Schreiber is an ASHI Associate home inspector serving the Northeast Ohio area.
Each home inspection from CLASS Home Inspection helps our clients get the most out of their property. We identify issues and give you sound advice to protect your property and increase its value. Contact us today to find out more!