Why would the seller allow a home inspection for a competing buyer before our offers are chosen?

Asked by nprovost, Santa Clara, CA Thu Mar 21, 2013

There are two offers on the table for the seller to choose from but supposedly he has not picked an offer. I found out from my agent that the home owner is allowing the other buyer to send in a home inspector this weekend. My agent advised me to do the same. Why should I pay for an inspection when I am not even sure if my offer will be accepted? Does it make sense that they allowed the inspection? I suspect that the seller has already selected the other offer but does not want to tell us that.

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Shannon Tric…, Agent, Syosset, NY
Tue Apr 2, 2013
I have always been curious in the other the direction. Why does the seller accept an offer before the engineer comes in, only have to deal with renegotiating the price. Buyers should base their initial price after the engineer.
1 vote
Patricia Ama…, Agent, Syosset, NY
Thu Apr 25, 2013
Probably the other buyer wants to move quickly because he knows that there are multiple offers on the table . I would speak to your agent and ask him to have this clarified by the listing agent .
The only thing that will make the home owner decide which offer to accept is the $ and the terms.
0 votes
Mack McCoy, Agent, Seattle, WA
Tue Apr 2, 2013
Standard practice here in Seattle - if you want to win the bid, you have your inspection first, then make your bid. Two offers for the same price, one had their inspection and one wants to have one . . . which one is going to win?

Of course, there is absurdity; we have seen properties with a dozen pre-inspections or more, but as a practical matter - sellers prefer more certainty to less certainty, and an offer without an inspection contingency (or a financing contingency) is just more certain than one with.

Hope this helps,
0 votes
Jacques Ambr…, Agent, Forest Hills, NY
Thu Mar 21, 2013
My guess is the seller is hedging his bet. If one of the buyers isn't satisfied with the engineer report, he would have a second buyer. It's not a great way to work, but if you really want the house, and are prepared to negotiate further if neccessary then you will have to decide if you want to gamble the price of an engineer.

It's not the way I like to work, but these are strange times.
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Anna M Brocco, Agent, Williston Park, NY
Thu Mar 21, 2013
If you are not comfortable doing an inspection before the offer is accepted, don't; if you feel the other offer was selected, you can consider moving on and listenening to your gut instinct....
0 votes
Gail Gladsto…, Agent, 11743, NY
Thu Mar 21, 2013
If the buyer wishes to "gamble" and get one step further down the road than the competition, sobeit. The seller does not pay for the inspection and gains a lot of information from it.

The Seller also ends up with a potential buyer who is now "pregnant with the deal" and more apt to stay in it.

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