Question Details

John Souerbry, Real Estate Pro in Fairfield, CA

Pre-Sale Inspections: Ask for reports or do your own?

Asked by John Souerbry, Fairfield, CA Mon Feb 21, 2011

It's been my policy to recommend that buyer clients hire their own inspectors to look over a house rather than accept the seller's inspection reports. I do this partially because many of these reports are aged (often 6 - 9 months) or because I don't know the inspectors (yes, I make exceptions if I know the inspector and the inspection was recent). Do you usually recommend the buyer hire their own inspectors or do you go with the seller's reports?

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I always recommend my buyers hire their own inspector. While it's informational to look at the seller's reports and information, it's best that the buyers perform their own due diligence on the property.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 21, 2011
Pre-Sale inspections are good for informing sellers about property defects, and gives them an opportunity to evaluate whether it's worth curing some things or leaving them for the buyer to ask about.

In my experience, good inspectors - as part of the inspection process - are also giving home buyers a tour of their new home, providing advice on maintenance items, location of shut-offs, an understanding of drainage and foliage issues, ventilation, and somuch more.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 21, 2011
Even with a pre-sale inspection I always advise my buyers to get there own. In fact, if they waive that right, our company has a form that we have the buyer sign.

Mack said, "In my experience, good inspectors - as part of the inspection process - are also giving home buyers a tour of their new home, providing advice on maintenance items, location of shut-offs, an understanding of drainage and foliage issues, ventilation, and so much more."

And I'm just going to cut and paste, 'cause it is almost word for word what I was going to add.

On the selling side, I think it is an excellent way to keep down the bargaining power. There are always minor issues that seller's get used to living with or maybe are unaware of that are best addressed before putting it on the market. My inspectors that do the pre-inspection will go back, at no cost, to check and make sure that these items have been repaired/and/or corrected and issue a report for comparison. This way the buyer cannot knit-pick the seller to death on the price over trivial items.
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0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 21, 2011
As a Listing Agent, I will always have a Termite Inspection in our disclosure packet. A "Property Inspection" is also something I recommend. The buyers are usually advised to conduct thier own "property inspection", so that's not alway a must for a seller, in my opinion.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 21, 2011
In my area very rarely does a seller have a pre-sale inspection. If there were a pre-sale inspection I would totally recommend that the buyer have their own preformed. Its all about loyalty to me and there are inspectors that have a tough time being a neutral party.

Just recently I wish I would have had a pre-sale inspection on a listing. The property which is held by an estate had some issue that we had no idea about until we were in contract. Two weeks later we all have finally negotiated to keep the deal together. With a pre-sale inspection the process wouldn't have been as difficult.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 21, 2011
I think the best policy is to hire your own inspector! It is great to have a point of reference. However, I want my buyers to know that the inspection that they are getting is from someone that they choose to hire to represent their best interests. Afterall, a second set of eyes when you are talking about investing that kind of money can only be a win-win. Especially when you consider the cost of the inspection.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 21, 2011
I always have strongly encourage the buyer to have an inspection by a licensed inspection company. It is the best 300-400 dollars they spend. There are no surprises that way and they inspector is working solely on behalf of the buyer.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 21, 2011
I rarely see a sellers inspection report. If I list a house I often suggest the sellers get an inspection so that they can see the things an inspector will find so they can fix them before a buyer gets a chance to see the house. Most sellers decline the advice. I have been offered a sellers inspection, but there was nothing in it or they would not have offered it up. I always suggest a buyer get a home inspection of their own even though most inspections are not very much worth the $375 paid. It makes the buyer feel better.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 21, 2011
I always tell buyers to have their own inspection.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 21, 2011
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