Buying and selling real estate can be a long, drawn-out process. For many, there are plenty of steps and a lot of headaches. However, one area that can make the entire transaction go much smoother is a home inspection.
This specific step is especially important for sellers. A good report can set the tone for the negotiations, and a solid, safe home is more likely to attract extra attention on the market. Therefore, it is crucial that everyone who wants to list their house should double check beforehand in order to make sure everything is in great condition.
Why a home inspection is vital to a sale
Nearly every real estate transaction takes place alongside a property inspection. This is because licensed professionals can assure buyers and sellers about the overall quality of the house, and whether or not major repairs need to be done. The answers to those questions can make or break a sale, so it is up to the seller to keep their home in good shape - certainly if they want everything to go off without a hitch.
Most purchase contracts include a clause for a home inspection, according to The Money Pit. Few people are comfortable buying real estate without first understanding every important detail, so a seller could soon find themselves faced with this process. However, they can't get frustrated as a stranger looks over all their private property. A sound report can mean a lot more money in their pockets at the end of the day.
In most cases, inspections happen after the contract has been signed, the news source noted. It might take as long as several hours for the professional to go over the entire residence, and it is a must that the current owner doesn't get in his or her way. After it is complete, a report is issued regarding all of the major problems as well as any little fixes that could get complicated in the future.
Depending on that final write-up, buyers could demand a lower asking price or that the seller makes repairs before closing. That is why a good report is so critical. The better it is, the more leverage sellers have, and vice versa.
Tips to pass a home inspection
Prior to an inspection, the seller doesn't need to completely renovate their property in order to receive a strong report. However, they should take several precautionary steps and make sure everything looks good. Regardless of overall condition, homeowners should be upfront with both the inspector and the potential buyer.
"Whatever is wrong with your house will be found out anyway," John Fryer, a California-based home inspector, told HSH.com. "If you disclose [problems] in advance and provide potential buyers with an inspector's report, it can go a long way to diffuse anxiety and help the transaction go through."
One first step all sellers should take before the property inspection is to remove all of that clutter, HSH.com noted. The inspector needs to have access to all important areas, like crawl spaces and electric panels. A person's clutter can get in the way of all this, making the entire process more difficult.
Also, appliances should be cleaned out, the website explained. There shouldn't be any dishes in the dishwasher, clothes in the dryer, and so on. Homeowners won't get points off for having unfolded laundry, but they will frustrate an inspector if they have to pull clothes out of the washing machine just to take a look at it. In any case, the homeowner and family members should give the professional plenty of space to work, ideally leaving the home altogether. Hanging around won't improve the final report.