Seller refuses to see our inspection report. Is this acceptable?

Asked by Mike Anderson, Oakland, CA Fri Dec 28, 2007

My wife and I were looking at a house that had some issues. The foundation had some work done on it in the past, and we wanted a structural engineer to look at it (particularly since the house was on a hillside).

The seller said she would refuse to look at the inspection report, obviously so that she would not have to disclose it to other potential buyers.

Is this OK? Our agent said this was within her rights, but it certainly turned us off; it made us wonder what she had to hide. So we walked away.

My agent gave me the impression there was nothing wrong with this practice, but there's an article in the SF Chronicle today that says otherwise:…

What say ye?


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Patti Philli…, , Carlsbad, CA
Fri Dec 28, 2007
Mike, I have never experienced a seller "refusing" to see an inspection report. As a matter of course I have always had it sent to the seller. When I represent the seller, as their agent I have always been present for the inspection, so that I know the severity first hand of any problems the inspector may uncover. Sometimes it is difficult in a report to figure out a serious problem from a minor one. I can't understand the thinking here of the seller, or frankly, her agent!

It must have to do with thinking that if she doesn't see it, she wouldn't have to disclose it in a future transaction. I think I might feel like you do, and be a bit cautious about wanting to move forward. If she wants to avoid disclosing issues in this report, I would question if she is having a "don't know- don't tell" policy on other issues with the home.

So, in my opinion- no this isn't the norm- at all!

As far as your agent feeling it is OK and within their rights- be certain that you have a strong agent who is willing to negotiate for YOUR rights- as your rights should be their number 1 priority in your transaction- and they should be willing to fight for your best interest.

Patti Phillips
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Rebecca Cham…, , Palos Verdes Estates, CA
Fri Dec 28, 2007
I would say that isn't the norm. Even if you submitted the inspection report to the Seller's agent, he/she would have an obligation to disclose that information whether or not he/she chose to read it. The agent has responsibility as well as the Seller. It is always best to overdisclose rather than under. If something comes up in an inspection report that doesn't seem right, the Seller can hire their own like inspector to verify or discount the original inspection report to give to potential sellers.
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