While a lot of things need to get done before a homeowner decides to put their property on the auction block, looking to sell it to the highest bidder, one of the most important tasks is to ensure that it's gone through the proper home inspection procedures. And while it's the inspector's job to find anything that's not up to par, the homeowner may know of some issues that can help the professional better perform their function.
With this in mind, RISMedia contributor and home inspection expert David Leopold offers some tips on the ways in which sellers can better prepare for this part of the home selling process.
For example, because a seller's primary goal is to ensure that their property looks as good as possible, they may be inclined to hide something that isn't working, worried that it will serve as a disincentive for a buyer to consider purchasing the property. This only complicates the problem, Leopold notes, as sooner or later it's bound to be found. In short, be open and honest with the home inspector so that they're made aware of any issues in the early going.
Increase efficiency by eliminating unnecessary hurdles
Even though a truly thorough home inspection process ought to take several hours, everyone wants to have it completed in as efficient a manner as possible. It behooves sellers, then, to make the inspector's job as easy as possible. Leopold says this can be accomplished by keeping all appliances clear. For example, if a load of laundry was thrown in the dryer, remove it before the inspector arrives.
The same standard applies to kitchen appliances like the stove or oven.
"Make sure your oven and stovetop are clear and clean, so we can easily test them without setting off the smoke alarm," said Leopold.
An additional way sellers can make their inspector's job easier is by running through the house and checking all the lights. Any flickering or dim lights after hitting the switch can be noted so that the inspection expert can further investigate the issue to see if the problem is equipment-based or derives from the home's power grid.
A comprehensive inspection is one of the best ways sellers can increase their chances of successfully selling their home. According to polling data from the National Association of Realtors, just 16 percent of Realtors say they have lost a sale because of something the inspector happened upon.