Congratulations on selling your Windsor house! The negotiations have been successful, and now it’s time for the inspection. As a homeowner, you are probably a little concerned about this next step. A seller is always wondering what repairs will be needed and how costly they will be. Most buyers carefully review the inspection report as well as they do their pay stubs, so be prepared to start negotiations again if there are some repairs that need addressing.
No one can guarantee what an inspection will uncover. As a real estate agent, I have received excellent reports and those from inspectors that uncovered work which surprised a seller greatly. Because of this, I always make every effort to attend an inspection. It’s my job as an agent, to represent my client and this is where I like to go over the property in bigger detail, ask questions and determine if a repair can tie up the sale of the property. Because I have attended hundreds of inspections I have found that there is a right way to prepare for your appointment as a seller. Take note of these tips to ensure you are starting off on the right foot:
1. Clean Your Home:
It makes an inspection go much more smoothly is the property is clean as it makes it easier for an inspector to walk down hallways or throughout a home without jumping over moving boxes or other hurdles.
2. Make simple repairs:
There are easy repairs that all homeowners should make prior to an inspection. Make sure you replace any burnt out lightbulbs and that all receptacles work properly. Also, create access to your electrical panel. If it’s blocked, it takes up more time. Another easy and quick repair is to replace any old and dirty heating and air conditioning filters. Finally, if you have a dripping faucet or slow drain, call a plumber and have these issues fixed. If a buyer or inspector sees this, it can raise a red flag which will make them wonder if there are larger problems behind that leak.
3. Create clear outdoor paths:
Inspectors need to walk outside of your home easily and without any roadblocks as well. If you have any obstacles, such as toys, play or yard equipment or anything else that would prevent them from doing their job, then it needs to be removed.
4. Access to basements, attics, doorways:
Again, if you have a basement or attic which is blocked or hard to get to, then you need to get rid of any obstacles. This includes ensuring there is work space near air conditioners, water heaters and furnaces for your inspector to do his or her job.
5. Overgrown shrubs?
Inspectors will always check your home’s foundation as well as siding and other outdoor areas. If these locations are covered with overgrown bushes, shrubs, groundcover or trees, then an inspector may find it difficult to continue and ask to come back when these issues are resolved. This only holds up the escrow and could create problems if you want to close on time.
6. If home is vacant:
If you have a vacant home that is being inspected, make sure the utilities, including pilot lights, water and gas are all connected. Again, without this, an inspector must reschedule his appointment and this could cause delays.
7. Create folder of receipts:
If you have made repairs on your home, for example, let’s say you had water damage, then leave a folder for the inspector to see that all repairs have been completed. This is very helpful for not only the inspection process, but gives your buyers peace of mind.
8. Secure pets:
Make sure your pets are properly secured or away from your home the day of your inspection. Inspectors go in and out of homes and should not be held responsible for making sure doors and gates are closed.
9. Be on time:
Inspectors are 99.9 percent always on time if not early for their appointments. Most have tight schedules and need to keep their day on track. This is especially true if you have scheduled an appointment for the first thing in the morning. So be on time or notify your real estate agent if there is a problem and you need to reschedule. Keep in mind that proper inspections can take several hours. So leave plenty of time in your day.
While no one can assure you that an inspection will go smoothly, in fact, even brand new construction often need to make repairs, you will make the entire process go much more smoothly if you follow the above tips. These simple steps shows an inspector and your buyers that you are taking the whole process seriously as well as valuing their time and business.