Pro Tip: Get A Pre-Listing Inspection

In the typical real estate transaction, the buyer is the one to order a home inspection. Few sellers take advantage of the opportunity to complete a professional assessment of their home before putting it on the market, but the point of this blog is to help you realize that as a seller, a pre-listing inspection may strengthen your negotiating position. How so? Read on my friends.

A pre-listing inspection is no different from a buyer’s inspection – it focuses on the proper functionality of all major components of the house. It’s a full inspection so you can better understand the condition of your home prior to the buyer’s inspection so you’re not caught off-guard in the midst of a transaction.

As a seller, you may be reluctant to spend the money, but there is value in being aware of issues in advance of negotiating a purchase agreement, allowing you the chance to resolve the issues or have them accounted for upfront in the asking price. This gives you better control in marketing your home and helps minimize stress from heat-of-the-moment negotiations once a purchase agreement is underway. Homes that have a pre-listing inspection generally sell faster and have fewer inspection-related issues to negotiate, enabling a smoother transaction.

As a seller, it’s always best to know about major inspection issues as soon as possible. Once they’re identified, they can be carefully assessed for proper resolution. You shouldn’t automatically assume that everything needs to be fixed before putting the home on the market. Your trusty Realtor will advise whether the repairs are necessary to the viability of the sale.

Remember that sellers and their agents have a legal duty to disclose to buyers any property issues that are revealed in a pre-inspection report. For many buyers, being provided forthcoming inspection information has both tangible and emotional value. They’re made aware of issues identified in the inspection report, which gives them more facts to work with, and then they’re provided subsequent clarity on which issues have been or will be resolved as part of the transaction.

The more information agents can provide to give buyers peace of mind, the better it is for the sale. A pre-listing inspection can also reinforce the asking price. IT enables agents to explain how the inspection report – plus any repairs that were made before listing – helped you arrive at your home’s value. In some cases, a pre-listing inspection can ultimately save you money by allowing you to choose to repair the issues prior to listing, giving you more control of repair costs.

If you do claim to have resolved issues that were uncovered in a pre-listing inspection, the buyer will want a subsequent inspection to confirm those repairs. Whether the buyer uses the same inspector is a matter of personal preference, and there are pros and cons either way. Using the same inspector can be beneficial because their prior experience and familiarity with the home allows them to better detect changes based on a point in time. But a properly trained inspector will inspect the home for the seller or buyer in the same manner. This person’s view of the home is objective and won’t change based on who hired them.

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