A.D. Cantelmo Property Management
Our Business is Property Management in Orange County California
How to talk to buyers about a home inspection
One of the most difficult things to get through when selling
a home is the buyers home inspection. As a Real Estate Broker and a General
contractor I have a huge problem with most home inspectors and if I told you
how I really felt about them, this article would be X rated. But as much as I
dislike the process, I realize that in order to protect all concerned, the home
inspection must be done and I always recommend my buyers get one.
The problem with most home inspections and inspectors is
that they are unrealistic and the companies that do them are not protecting the
buyer, but protecting themselves. I love it when they tell the buyer one thing
on the inspection walk through, for example that the lights up in the attic are
not rated for insulation so the buyer should have the insulation moved away
from the lights, no big deal. But on the report, it tells a whole different story
and basically tells the buyer the house is going to burn down.
The best way to handle the home inspection is before it takes
place. One thing that could be done, if you are the listing agent, is do a home
inspection prior to putting the home on the market. There are risks to this,
though and before you have your seller pay for a home inspection, explain to them
that whatever they find and do not fix, must be disclosed. As a buyers agent,
you need to sit down with your buyers prior to making an offer on a home and
explain to them what a home inspection is good for and also how they should interpret what they read in a
home inspection. But let me be very clear, never give advice on the home
inspection itself. The buyer is paying for this advice and you as a Realtor
need to stay a good distance away from criticizing
the report. If you talk your buyer out of being concerned about the inspection
then you could be blamed if the report calls out something that you downplayed and
it turns out to be a real expensive problem after the sales closes.
The way I handle the home inspection for buyers is get the
small stuff fixed and if the seller will not, then I will. There is always one
thing on the inspection report that a buyer will fixate on and most of the time
it is something minor. Do not fight them on it. If there is a major problem and
the seller refuses to fix it, tell your buyer to walk away. Do not try and get
past a major issue if the seller is unwilling to play ball. You do not want to
put your buyer into a situation where they are going to have a major expense
after the sale closes and especially if it is a first time buyer. If you are
dealing with an experienced buyer and they are willing to go ahead with the
deal and take their chances with the problem, make sure you have them sign an
addendum showing that you explained to them the issues if they go forward.
As a Realtor you not only need to protect your buyers, but also yourself.
The home inspection is painful, but usually the pain is
short lived and as a Realtor you need to get past it. It may cost you a few
dollars, but remember, don’t let a couple of pennies cost you many dollars.
A.D. Cantelmo Property
Management Specializes in Property Management in Orange County