Last week we housesellers offered some tips to home buyers on the importance of having a property you wish to purchase inspected before you sign a contract and this week we will touch upon what sellers can expect. The home inspection is the biggest deal breaker in the home buying process and, as a seller, you want to be as prepared as possible for the first buyer that comes along. Once you get the price and terms agreed on, the last thing you want is for the deal to fall through over a home inspection.

The main thing to do when you have decided to sell is to be proactive. Do a thorough walk through before you list. Make sure the entire house is accessible. Fix minor issues like patching up nail holes, replacing cracked floor tiles and making sure all light fixtures are working properly. Make sure all appliances are working, especially the ones you rarely use. If you are not living in the house make sure all utilities are turned on. Assemble a folder of warranty and maintenance information as the inspector may want to know when you last had the chimney cleaned or had the HVAC system serviced. Make sure to check out your plumbing system before your inspection and see that bathrooms are caulked, then check for signs of mold and mildew in damp areas of the home such as bathrooms and the basement. Be sure that you change the filters in heating and cooling systems before the inspector tests your system.

As a seller, you should never sign a contract until you fully understand its obligations, particularly where it concerns your responsibility for repairs. Once the home inspection is completed, it is important to thoroughly review the report since the buyer will certainly do so. It is also important to keep in mind that your home will not “pass” or “fail” an inspection, the inspector will simply describe the overall condition of the house and make repair recommendations. As a seller, you have several options that include making the repairs or offering buyers a credit. And rest assured, there's no need for you to fix everything a home inspector thinks could stand for improvement as a home inspection report is not a to-do list and most buyers are willing to negotiate.

The tips above are meant to be an introduction of what to expect of the home inspection process as a seller. For more comprehensive information, please contact us and we would be glad to give you detailed information and answer all of your questions.