Janice's Blog


Should sellers do a pre-list home inspection? Janice Roosevelt, Keller Williams, PA & DE - jroosevelt@kw.com

Dian Hymer's  recent article  in  Inman News on pre-listing home inspections drives home some great  points.  At a time when sellers are sensitive about prices she asks whether  is it worthwhile to spend the extra $400-$1000 dollars for home inspections.

On the Matt Fetick Real Estate team - serving Pennsylvania and Delaware, the answer, transaction after transaction, is a resounding, yes.  We want our sellers and buyers to be educated about the property condition before they enter into a contract. It also cuts down on negotiations.

 A recent listing in Hockessin, Delaware, is the perfect example. During the pre-list inspection a crack was discovered in the foundation and the seller took care of it, and disclosed it.

Discovering such a defect during a buyer's inspection while the contract is in play can send a red flag to the lender if price is renegotiated, or it could send the buyer running to the next listing.

Most commonly, buyers and their agents will over price the estimated cost to fix a problem (to be on the safe side) and the seller loses out. Much better to identify the problem, fix it and price the property accordingly.

In our example, the property sold with multiple offers in three weeks. And , it went to the pickiest buyer. As a buyer's agent, I appreciate having those inspections to pass along to my clients. A recent example was an estate sale in Malvern, Pa. In this case, there was just to much work for a first-time home buyer to tackle so they passed.

Home inspection foundation to roof and what's in between, It's what they can see, with a few exceptions and you want to make sure that access is available to attic and crawl spaces, as well as that AC and heat are up and running, ready to be tested.

In some parts of our selling area, septic systems are common with larger properties. This is a separate inspection and can be a clostly fix.  A pre-list inspection means the seller  can pick the inspector and when it comes to septics in our areas, there is one name that makes people quake in their shoes. If a seller has her to the pre-list inspection, there's not too much doubt about the veracity of the results.

Hymer also brings up the case when something is disclosed to the buyer, but they go ahead and ask.  A house I had listed in Glen Mills had older supports in the garage and while the buyers asked, the sellers said no and the buyers removed their contingency.

For more information about buying or selling your home contact Janice Roosevelt, jroosevelt@kw.com, 610-764-3062

Comment balloon 5 commentsJanice Roosevelt • April 19 2010 03:59PM


Great information.  thanks for passing this along.

Posted by Rolando Trentini (F.C.TuckerEmge Realtors, LLC) over 10 years ago

Thank you for posting and sharing your very informative article.

Wishing you continued success.

Posted by Constantine Isslamow, "Training and Accountability" (Century 21 United Realty Inc. ) over 10 years ago

Pre-list inspection is a nice marketing feature. A buyer will feel more confident in their decision if they see the efforts the seller has made or is willing to make to accommodate them.  Plus it lets us know ahead of time if there are any issues that need to be addressed.  A simple fix can be very extreme to a nervous or picky buyer.

Posted by Ross Therrien, Realtor, Broker Associate (Prudential Verani Realty, Londonderry,New Hampshire) over 10 years ago

"Most commonly, buyers and their agents will over price the estimated cost to fix a problem (to be on the safe side) and the seller loses out. Much better to identify the problem, fix it and price the property accordingly."

Janice, this is so true! It happens all the time, doesn't it?

Posted by Ann Allen Hoover, CDPE SRES ASP e-PRO Realtor - Homes for Sale - AL (RE/MAX Advantage South) over 10 years ago

Janice - A few years back I sold a rental duplex I owned.  Before I put it on the market, I had a good friend, who was knowledgeable about construction to do an inspection for me.  He identified a number of items, and I fixed them. 

Often a seller will list at a low price because of the poor condition of a property.  BUT, the buyer comes in, and they lowball an offer for the same needed repairs.  I always think it is best to fix things before marketing - especially the more cost effective cosmetic repairs.

Posted by Myrl Jeffcoat, Greater Sacramento Real Estate Agent (GreatWest Realty) over 10 years ago

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