Home Selling in 07821>Question Details

Mb, Home Seller in 07821

Are realtors allowed to let buyers into the house and leave during a home inspection with no owners present?

Asked by Mb, 07821 Sat Apr 28, 2012

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As a listing or selling agent, I attend all home inspections. I'm licensed in NH and CT and most agents there do the same. Should something go wrong, the agents should be there to witness and hopefully resolve. In 34 yrs of sales, I've seen everything from inspectors overflowing tubs to stoves being left on. As a listing agent, it's my responsibility to keep an eye out but to keep quiet and let the inspection proceed. At the end, I just ask if I can see any problems that the owners should be aware of. A recent inspection showed a huge ant colony in a wall that you wouldn't necessarily see. (It was like the Nature Channel!) I was able to tell the out-of-state sellers that I saw it.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jul 5, 2012
I will join the chorus on this one - "no" an agent should not leave the property during the inspection, unless he/she has an associate - a licensed associate - or the listing agent present. And the seller should not be home during inspection...it makes everyone uncomfortable, including the seller.

Best,
Jeanne Feenick
Unwavering Commitment to Service, Unsurpassed Results
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Jun 30, 2012
Thank you everyone for your responses.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Jun 29, 2012
Jonathan,

I just realized that was very poorly worded. I meant that the buyers agent should always be there or find a co-worker who can fill in for them. It does slow things down if the sellers agent is there. Just out of curiosity why are you looking at Q&A in New Jersey when your in Arizona? Unless you practiced real estate here in the past you don't know how things are done here. It is definitely wrong for the buyer's agent to not be present at the home inspection.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Jun 29, 2012
I disagree wholeheartedly that the listing agent has "no regard for you, your property or the purchasers" because he/she wasn't there for an inspection.

It's rare for a listing agent to be there, at least in the vast majority of locales of which I'm aware ... in fact, it generally slows down the proceedings greatly when either the listing agent or the seller is present as more often than not, intentionally or not, they end up shadowing the inspector the entire time.

As for having buyers there when the agent's not there, it's a little unusual but not necessarily wrong.
Web Reference: http://expiredtosoldaz.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Jun 29, 2012
It is not a law that the agent must be present. It is in the best interest of the buyers that their agent remain on site during the inspection. It is also a professional courtesy to the sellers that the buyers agent be there. In most cases, the sellers are asked to not be home during the inspection and the sellers agent will usually show up for a short amount of time just to check in. The agent that opens the door with the key that is entrusted to them, it responsible for that house during that time.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Apr 30, 2012
Thank you for your answers. I dont understand how a realtor can unlock your house and allow strangers to have free access without their being there. The conditions of purchase have not been waived at this point, and the buyers are just people off the street checking out your house. A licenced inspector does not have your best interest in mind and is mostly busy doing his inspection to notice or care what the buyers are doing. Whenever a realtor uses your key to unlock the house, he is responsible for who he lets in, and leaving when the inspection is being done is a negligence on the part of the realtor in the completion of his duties. Yes, a realtor is responsible for the security of your home when they are entrusted with the key. This is something I will surely be warey of in the future.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Apr 29, 2012
Not a good idea. Inspectors are Licensed professionals, but an Agent should be on site
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Apr 29, 2012
Mb,

Usually the owners are not present at the inspection anyway, so that the inspector can work freely and the buyers can ask questions and make comments freely. The buyers agent is usually there with their buyers, first as a courtesy, and second to get an idea if there is something that will need attention during the inspection phase.
Sometimes there is just a conflict with the agents time, and as long as the buyers and the LICENSED inspector are there, it's not illegal or unethical.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Apr 29, 2012
There is no law per say, but generally as a professional courtesy at least one agent usually remains there to be on hand to answer questions, concerns, etc. IF everyone is on good terms and there is a particular reason that the agents cannot stay, prior commitment before the inspection was scheduled, family or other emergency, etc, then I can see how this can be possible.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Apr 28, 2012
As long as the inspector that was hired to do the inspection is there, most agents don't see it as a problem. Often the inspector will make the appointment through the listing agents office and has full access to the home. And part of the inspection process is having the buyers present for the inspection.

I personally attend all of my buyers inspections. But this is more for the benefit of the buyers as opposed to any security issue as the buyers don't have access to the lock box.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Apr 28, 2012
I could see this not being a problem if the homeowners were present. However, we returned early to discover the buyers had rifled through personal papers and were reading them, and other items in the bedrooms had been moved from dresser tops. We feel it was a gross intrussion of privacy to allow strangers to spend over 4 hours unattended in our home helping themselves to satellite TV, personal papers, etc. while the inspector does his job. We feel the realtor was very negligent in allowing this. If the buyers desired to remain during the inspection, so should the realtor.
Flag Sat Apr 28, 2012
I could see this not being a problem if the homeowners were present. However, we returned early to discover the buyers had rifled through personal papers and were reading them, and other items in the bedrooms had been moved from dresser tops. We feel it was a gross intrussion of privacy to allow strangers to spend over 4 hours unattended in our home helping themselves to satellite TV, personal papers, etc. while the inspector does his job. We feel the realtor was very negligent in allowing this. If the buyers desired to remain during the inspection, so should the realtor.
Flag Sat Apr 28, 2012
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