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What to do Before Your Home Gets Listed

Manson Slik, December 13, 2012


You may have been told that a home buyer should get a home inspection. Maybe you paid for a home inspection when you first bought your current property. It is generally accepted that a home inspection is something only the buyer should do. This is simply not true. When selling your home, getting a home inspection done by an impartial and reputable 3rd party before you put your house on the market can be hugely beneficial to both the buyer and the seller.

As a seller, having a home inspection alerts you to any of  the deficiencies which  your home may have. There are  usually some small deficiencies, but you want to be sure you know about the potential larger issues that could affect the sale of your home. Most homes won’t have many or any of these larger issues, but you need to know if there are problems with the foundation, the plumbing, the electrical wiring, mold, or water penetration to name a few. Knowing before you list your home on the market gives you a chance to address those issues, or modify your asking price appropriately. By disclosing all a home's defects up front, you are letting potential buyers make an offer based on the real value of your home. No surprises later means once you get an offer, it is more likely to end in a sale, and your buyer won’t have as much leverage to lower your asking price.

Typically, buyers make an offer based on a set of assumptions. They expect that if a home looks fine, it is fine. So they make an offer that is conditional on a home inspection, and the buyer can walk away after the inspection without even revealing the results. That's a lot of leverage for a buyer. As a seller, getting your own inspection done ahead of time gives you power because you already know the issues. You can even ask to compare the results of your inspection with your buyer's if they insist on obtaining one too.

You can't hide a major defect. Not disclosing it just gives the buyer leverage to lower their offer. So get a home inspection done, put the information out there, and adjust your asking price. You'll end up selling your home more quickly, and for a better price.

Written by Manson Slik

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