Pros and Cons of a Pre-Listing Home Inspection
Pros and Cons of a Pre-Listing Home Inspection
When selling their homes, most owners expect buyers to conduct a home inspection. Home inspections are now an accepted part of the house-buying process. A home inspection protects buyers by uncovering underlying issues with a property. And if they do find problems, shrewd buyers can use them as a basis for renegotiating the property's price.
This is why for people selling their properties, home inspections can be an ordeal. They never know what buyers will do; will they renegotiate or walk away? From a seller's viewpoint, neither outcome is desirable.
Is there a way for owners to take control of the home inspection process? The primary reason for sellers' anxiety during a home inspection is they do not fully know the condition of their homes. Hence, they fear that the inspection will unearth something bad. In that case, why don’t owners inspect their properties before putting them on the market? This is known as doing a pre-listing home inspection.
Through a pre-listing home inspection owners can take control of the home inspection process, instead of leaving it in buyers' hands.
What is a pre-listing home inspection?
A home inspection is not the same as walking-through a property. Owners will usually inspect their homes before putting them on the market. But such inspections are superficial and focused on the aesthetics of the property. On the other hand, a home inspection is a methodical assessment of every part of a home. It is conducted by a professional home inspector who scores the house using a checklist of 1,600 items. These inspections can last over three hours.
When the home inspection comes before the property is listed and is paid for by the owner, it is a pre-listing home inspection.
Pros of a pre-listing home inspection
Know the actual state of the house
It is common for owners to live in a house for years and not be aware of major problems with the property. People usually only become conscious of damage when it interferes with their enjoyment of a property. Apart from this, damage can stay undetected for years, hiding behind the walls of a house, inside its floors, or in the roof. A professional inspection can reveal these problems.
Less stress during the sale
Waiting for the outcome of a buyer's home inspection is a stomach-churning ordeal the owners can avoid by conducting their inspection. This gives the owner more power during negotiations since they know the best and worst things about their home, explains Blue Mountain, a property management company in Woodland Park.
More accurate pricing
The pre-listing home inspection informs owners of the true state of their property. But owners are not obligated to fix every problem an inspection reveals. What they can do is take those issues into account when pricing the property. This ensures that owners price their homes competitively.
More buyer confidence
The law obligates owners to disclose the issues uncovered by a pre-listing inspection. The inspection adds a level of transparency to sale and boosts buyer's confidence. Would-be buyers can be sure that they are unlikely to discover major problems in the future. This gives them a more accurate idea of the property's value.
Reduce the possibility of renegotiation
A home that has been inspected before the listing is more likely to sell at the owner's price. First, it has been professionally inspected and its selling price duly adjusted. Second, the homeowner has informed the buyer of all existing problems. The result is that the buyer is left with little ground for renegotiating the seller's price.
Makes selling a home easier
Real estate agents have an easier time selling homes that have had pre-listing inspections. This is because all of a buyer's questions have been anticipated and answered. Therefore, the realtor knows how exactly how to market the home.
Cons of a pre-listing home inspection
It costs money
Selling property costs money and the last thing owners want to hear about is anything that will force them to spend more money. A home inspection can cost anywhere from $200 to $1000, depending on the home's location and details included in the inspection.
It may necessitate repairs
Owners may feel pressed to fix any damage identified by the inspection. And that is one more expense owners would rather avoid. But, not doing the inspection does not save a homeowner the cost of repairs. Instead, they will eventually pay for it by accepting a lower price for the property.
Homeowners must disclose inspection results
The Seller's Disclosure Notice (SDN), which homeowners must complete, requires full disclosure of the condition of the home. If a home has had a pre-listing inspection, its issues can make it appear in worse shape than properties that have not been inspected.
It does not replace the buyer's home inspection
A pre-listing inspection is not a substitute for the buyer's home inspection. It means there will be two inspections of the property. Although the second inspection is paid for by the buyer, it does prolong the sales process.