Home Selling FAQs: Should I Get a Pre-Inspection? by Jennifer Prestwich REALTOR®

Whenever I am working with Home Sellers in Henderson CO, we take time to carefully consider market conditions before putting the house on the market.  We will first take a look at the other homes that are available and under contract, as well as those that have recently sold, to get an idea of how to properly price the home, and how many days the home is likely to be on the market before selling.

We can then prepare the home so that it will show at its very best.  This may mean de-cluttering and staging so that buyers can see the home at it’s best and bring their best offer.  But this will only address the cosmetic “look” of your home, attracting a buyer based on amenities and looks.

A smart buyer will always want to have their purchase inspected by an independent home inspector.  In fact, in the dates and deadlines portion of the Contract to Buy and Sell, there is a specific date by which they will agree to have it inspected to see if there is anything that needs repair.  This allows them to “peak under the hood” to have the major systems inspected, including HVAC, electrical, structural and plumbing.  They will also inspect the roof and foundation and may want a radon test or sewer scope.

As a home owner, you will usually be in good shape on an inspection if you have been keeping up with the maintenance of your home.  But there are some issues that you cannot know about without them being specifically examined.

If you are selling your home, a Pre-Inspection might be a good idea.  A Pre-Inspection is a proactive approach that allows you, as the seller, to have a NAHI – certified, licensed home inspector examine your home before it even goes on the market.  This can eliminate any nasty surprises that may be lurking in your home!  I was recently having coffee with a fellow Realtor who works in another market.  She relayed the story of a seller who opted not to have a Pre-Inspection, who wanted to “take their chances” that everything would be fine.  During the buyer’s inspection, they found that the home had hail damage to the roof, needed a new furnace, and that the water heater was just about at the end of its useful life.  After some tense moments, the seller ended up replacing the roof and taking several thousand dollars off the price!

Had the seller gone ahead and had the inspection, they may have opted to address these issues prior to selling and may have received their full asking price without having to reduce it due to inspection items.

Do I have to repair everything that the inspector finds?  Actually, no.  You can chose to address all of the repairs, some of the repairs, or none of them.  However, you do need to disclose anything material that you find out about the home you are selling.  Not sure if its “material”?  Think of it this way: if you were the buyer and you would want to know, then disclose it.  And remember – if it’s something the neighbors know, they will tell the buyer!

Put yourself in the buyer’s shoes for a moment… Imagine you walked into a home that was priced comparably to the other homes you have looked at, and they had a Pre-Inspection available to see, along with receipts addressing the major issues from that inspection.  Would you feel more inclined to write a full-price offer?

As the seller, you may not want to replace all of the items, or any of them.  This is when you will want to work closely with your Realtor to determine how to price your property to best reflect the repairs that are needed.

In the best case scenario, your Pre-Inspection will uncover the fact that you have been taking great care of your home and that there really isn’t anything that needs “doing”.  In that event, you can proudly display your Pre-Inspection like a grandmother shows off her Brag Book of photos of the grandkids!

Need a referral for a NAHI home inspector?  I work with great home inspectors every week.  Call me today at 720-341-5235 for a recommendation.

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