Inspections are a standard part of the average real estate transaction, but in many cases they are also the deciding factor in whether the sale goes through. No house is perfect, and each one has its own unique set of quirks. Ideally, these things are small and easily correctable or negotiable. However, there are plenty of occasions when inspections reveal surprises that are very costly to the sellers or even deal-breakers for the buyers. When you pre-inspect your home before it hits the market, you can plan ahead for these situations and prevent a minor downfall from turning into a disaster.
Buying a house is one of the biggest investments that the average person makes in their lifetime, so of course buyers set a budget, conduct inspections, and take other precautions before scribbling their John Hancock all over expensive and binding legal documents. So, sellers, shouldn’t it be the same for you?
Nobody Likes Surprises
Imagine that you’ve hired an awesome agent, they’ve priced your house well for the market and they’ve done their due diligence with your Seller Estimate Proceeds so that you have a solid idea of what you’ll be walking away with at the end of the deal. You accept a contract shortly after hitting the market for full asking price, and the smile on your face feels like it’s tattooed there… until your general home inspection reveals that your roof has two layers and the decking is rotten. If you’re not prepared to shell out $30k for a brand new roof or take a major hit on your list price, there’s a good chance your buyers are going to walk. And since none of this was part of your original plan, you’ve now entered full panic mode. You only have five days to come up with a resolution, and you have no clue what to do.
Plan Ahead Instead
That’s admittedly a worst case scenario, but it does happen! So let’s flip the script and say that you decided to have your home pre-inspected before you listed. Finding out your roof is toast is still bad news, but now you have time to talk through options through with your agent. Maybe you have the cash to repair the roof and maintain the value of your home, maybe you own your home outright so lowering the price isn’t such a big deal, or maybe you decide to wait to sell so you can take time to save money and make the necessary repairs. The important thing is that you are able to make the right decision for yourself and your home, instead of feeling forced to make a snap judgment in an attempt to hold a deal together.
Not only does this take pressure off of you as the seller, but when you do list your prospective buyers will feel reassured that you made the time and effort in advance to be up front about any issues or repairs and spare them surprises. Your plans still change, but you remain in control of the situation, which right where you want to be when your biggest asset is on the line.