Home inspections exist to inform buyers of any issues the property has. It’s not always easy to get the seller to make major repairs, though— even if the damage was their fault.
Fortunately, there are ways you can boost the chance the odds turn out in your favor.
Not sure where to start? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered.
Let’s take a look at everything you need to know about what to do if the seller won’t make repairs after inspection.
Repair Requests You Should Ask For
In general, it’s not unreasonable to expect the seller to fix issues with the home that could directly affect your quality-of-life. After all, nobody buys a house to add more problems to their life.
For example, issues like the presence of mold or lead-based paint should be taken care of by the seller as soon as possible since they could put your health at risk. The same could be said about electrical issues, plumbing complications, etc.
Some types of structural issues with houses, such as significant roof leaks, could be in violation of local building codes. The seller would then be legally obligated to resolve the situation before the buyer is able to complete the transaction.
When in doubt, speak with your inspector about what method of action you should take. They will be able to provide you with all the necessary information regarding what types of repairs need to be completed as soon as possible.
Repairs You Shouldn’t Ask About
Minor repairs, such as things you can fix on your own, is not a good idea to request that the seller fix. Not only will this cause a delay in the sale of the property, but it places inconvenience upon the seller, as well.
One of the most common scenarios in which this occurs is when a buyer is particularly bothered by a cosmetic issue with the home. A cracked tile in the guest bathroom, for example, is something that wouldn’t take too much work for the buyer to take care of.
As a general rule of thumb, it’s often not recommended to inquire about repairs that would cost less than approximately $100 to fix.
It’s also important to keep in mind that most sellers have a number of offers on their property. If other buyers offer a similar amount as you but aren’t quite as pushy with the number of repairs they want to have completed, they may walk away from your sale and choose them instead.
Since the majority of cosmetic issues can be completed on a weekend afternoon or through the help of a contractor, they often aren’t worth stressing about. Plus, you’ll have the added benefit of learning a new skill if you choose to do the job on your own.
What If the Seller Won’t Repair Anything?
Under most circumstances, the seller isn’t required to make any of the repairs that you suggest. Even if something like the home’s heating system is severely outdated, the seller could offer the house as-is if they choose to do so.
Since some mortgage lenders may not offer loans on homes that have significant problems, this could be used as leverage to coerce the seller into making at least some of the repairs.
But, you may still be left with a refusal to do so.
From here, you’ll simply have to accept that the repairs will still need to be completed and consider whether or not this makes buying the house still worth it for you.
A good way to justify making the repairs on your own is to determine whether or not the price you pay for the house plus the amount you spent on repairs would be greater than or less than the amount you could sell the home for after everything is done.
A Common Scenario
For example, let’s assume you’re going to spend $500,000 on a new home for you and your wife. Unfortunately, the seller is refusing to budge when you suggest that they make $20,000 worth of repairs to the house’s foundation and electrical wiring.
Fortunately, the seller is looking to relocate quickly and has given you a great deal on the home. Most similar homes in the immediate area sell for over $600,000.
So, you’ll be paying a total of $520,000 to have a home that’s in respectable shape. In this particular scenario, it will be worth it to complete the transaction and fix any outstanding problems.
In the event that it’s not financially worth it for you to do so, it’s most likely in your best interest to walk away from the transaction and find a similar home that doesn’t have as many problems.
Although you’ve already paid for the inspection, it’s far better to take a loss on a few hundred dollars then it is to be stuck with a house that you can’t sell for as much as you’ve invested into it.
It Can Seem Difficult If a Seller Won’t Make Repairs After Inspection
But it doesn’t have to be.
With the above information about how to handle a situation when a seller won’t make repairs after inspection, you’ll be well on your way toward taking the steps that are best for you.
Want to learn more about how we can help? Feel free to get in touch with us today to see what we can do.