Ask the Expert – Should Sellers Get Their Own Inspection?

Debbie Bremner May 8, 2018

Q. I’ve heard it said that some sellers inspect their homes prior to listing it for sale. Is that a good idea?

A: Pre-Listing Inspections Put the Seller In Control

For homeowners considering a move, some experts are recommending they get a home maintenance inspection before they list their home for sale. Such an inspection can provide a full picture of any repairs that need to be done before they become negotiating points in a transaction.

A home maintenance inspection is similar to a home inspection that is done by buyers. A licensed inspector can check on the main systems of the home, such as the roof, walls, foundation, HVAC, electrical, and plumbing.

You might not even notice a problem with your home. An inspector may be able to spot small problems, however, before they become bigger, more expensive problems. They can also advise clients on the regular maintenance tasks they should be doing on their home to keep everything in tip-top shape.

An inspector can walk homeowners around the property to show them any potential problems they spot. Homeowners will receive a report that details anything the inspector finds as well, which can serve as a to-do list to address, if they so wish.

Every three to five years, you should have a home inspector come out and do a maintenance inspection. Like changing your furnace filter, you should do it before it gets so bad that it becomes a problem.  A home inspector isn’t trying to sell you anything,and isn’t going to make any money off doing the repairs.

The cost of a home maintenance inspection varies by the size of the home but can average $200 to $400. The buyer should still get their own inspection, but you’ll have a reference point for anything that might come up.

My Take: Get a home inspection. My standard is that knowledge is power, and I want my clients to have power. An inspection allows you to address any important items prior to buyers even viewing your home, let alone inspecting it. The fitter your home is, the more confidence a buyer will have in transacting the sale.

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