A home inspection can feel a bit scary, but don’t panic. Some buyers make the mistake of thinking the inspection is a way of getting their repair wish list, but sellers are not required to have a perfect house.
First off – everything on the inspection report is negotiable. Requests are just requests, but being truthful about any known issues, and addressing concerns is the best policy. The truth will be revealed, so it’s easier and more cost effective to be proactive, and have a plan going into the negotiations.
- You are not required to fix everything before you sell your home.
2. If you know something needs to be fixed, always disclose it.
3. Disclosures are not deal-breakers.
4. Wait for a copy of the report.
5. Negotiate repairs – both you (the seller) and the buyer have options.
6. A cosmetic issue should not be considered a repair. If the issue poses a safety, structural or physical hazard, most buyers will request those repairs be fixed.
Who Schedules the Inspection?
The buyer will choose and pay for their preferred inspector. You can be present during the inspection if you like, but be cooperative and accepting of feedback. It is not personal, so resist getting defensive or upset from any comments made by the inspector or buyer.
Once the inspection is complete, the buyer will review it and decide what their concerns are. The buyer has options regarding how they would like repairs completed. Here are a few choices the buyer has:
- They can ask you to make the requested repairs.
2. They can ask you to reduce the sales price in lieu of repairs.
3. They may not requestanyrepairs be done.
4. They will decline to purchase the property.
Your Rights of a Seller:
1. Agree to the buyer’s requests and make the repairs.
2. Agree to some of the requests: A. Make some repairs and create an allowance for the remainder of the repairs, this will need to be stipulated in the contract. B. Make no repairs and state in the contract: “House is being sold as is and in lieu of repairs.” C. Any repairs you disclose you will not complete, and you agree to credit the buyer, will need to be stipulated on the contract as “Buyer will be credited $_______________ .”
3. Agree not to make repairs or issue any credits – the buyers may still move forward with the purchase if the repairs are negligible – or they may decide to walk away. You must be prepared to accept either outcome!