While I highly recommend the Seller getting inspections, there are always exceptions to this. If a home has been completely remodeled or updated, most of the issues that are likely to come up may have already been taken care of. In that regard, a Seller may be safe in limiting their inspections and reports to only those that are mandatory. Mandatory reports generally include an Environmental and Geological Report (cost is between $130-$160). (Keep in mind that there are also mandatory Disclosures required, but this will be addressed in another Blog). But the majority of homes do not fall into this category. Most homes in the Bay Area were built in the late 50’s and early 60’s. Even the most well-maintained homes will have some flaws. If a homeowner has been living with these for a while they often fail to be aware of them anymore.
Another exception to this is when we have a hot market. Continue reading
Recommended: The minimum basic inspections I believe a Seller should obtain beforehand are a Termite Inspection and a Property Inspection. These will cover 90% of what may come up. There may be electrical/wiring issues at the panel; possible foundation concerns; plumbing leaks; presence of dry wood or subterranean termites ; dry rot etc. If a roof is ten years old or more, it’s a good idea to get a Roof Inspection as well. A Fireplace and Chimney Inspection are also a good idea if the chimney is a masonry chimney. The cost of inspections will range from $700 to a $1000 total. More often than not, they will save you a lot more money and stress in the long run.
Don’t be surprised if the Buyers want to get their own inspections on top of yours. Continue reading
The second reason it is smart to get inspections beforehand is strictly financial. It is a good idea to know what a Buyer will discover BEFORE a Buyer discovers it. That way Sellers can address an issue on their own terms BEFORE the escrow. Here is an example from an actual escrow where I represented the Buyer. The bathroom had a tile floor. The Buyer’s termite inspection revealed damage to the subflooring which meant the tile had to be ripped out in order to repair the subfloor. Since the Buyer made an offer on a house with a “tile bathroom floor”, the Seller had to make the repair and give our Buyer a new tile floor! This was going to cost several thousand dollars. It was not something the Seller had anticipated simply because they did not know the problem existed. Continue reading