While home inspections are intended to protect buyers from making bad investments, let’s face it: the inspection process for sellers can feel a bit invasive. A stranger is essentially coming into your home and inspecting every nook and cranny of your property. But don’t worry, there are ways sellers can prepare their home to ensure the inspection goes smoothly.
Here are five things sellers should know about home inspections:
After surveying your home, the home inspector will provide a 30-60-page report with photographs detailing all of the issues within the home, both major and minor. The inspection will likely include roof, plumbing, foundation, electrical, mechanical, landscaping, flooring, walls, and ceilings. Home inspections are very thorough, and the inspector may find issues that you did not know about, so be prepared.
Expect an inspection to cost between $300 to $450 for an average sized home and will go up or down from that price point. While this may seem pricey, a home inspection can prevent a deal from falling through later on due to unforeseen issues. Typically buyers cover the cost of the inspection —unless, of course, you do one in advance and include it with your listing paperwork to potential buyers. We’ll talk about pre-inspections below.
How a Pre-Inspection Can Help
A pre-inspection can be a huge benefit if you are willing to fix any issues within your home. This helps to tackle issues now rather than be surprised by them later and you can do the repairs on your own terms and not the buyer’s. For example, if the inspector finds a leak, you can fix it yourself. If the buyer’s inspector finds the leak, the buyer will request that you hire a professional plumber to repair it. Keep in mind that any major repairs should be done by a professional.
Take Care of the Small Stuff First
It’s a great idea to take care of some of the small items (the ones you’re aware of) prior to listing your home for sale. This not only makes your home more presentable and ready for showing, it’s just a great way to lessen any issues found in the home inspection. Here are a few tips:
Go through your home and replace any light bulbs that are out. Inspectors sometimes see a dead light bulb and assume it is an electrical issue.
Clean out your gutters, otherwise the inspector will recommend that be done to prevent water damage to the gutters, roof and to prevent leaks in the basement.
Make sure all lights, fixtures, fans and outlets work and that there are no exposed wires.
Make sure there are no leaks.
Make sure all windows are in working order and open and close as they should.
Talk to Your Agent
If you’re thinking about selling your home, I would love the opportunity to chat with you about how the home inspection works, the pros and cons of doing a pre-inspection, and more. I’m also happy to introduce you to some of our area’s best inspectors. Please do not hesitate to reach out.