Are you required to use a licensed contractor to fix home inspection repairs identified during home inspections?

Asked by Bbnodice, South Carolina Thu May 12, 2011

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Marika Kary, Agent, Summerville, SC
Thu May 19, 2011
I was about to start my answer by saying I was biased because I am married to a contractor. But then I thought of my duty as a Realtor to my clients and for both my buyers and my sellers, I would require whoever does the repairs is licensed to do so – it protects the seller from liability of shoddy workmanship and it ensures the buyer that the repairs are done correctly. Now back to my original point, all too often, my husband is called in to correct problems that were fixed previously by someone who was unlicensed, unqualified and often incompetent. The cost is always much higher to fix someone’s bad work than to do it right the first time because it involves breaking down the previous bad work, fixing any damage their “fix” caused, and fixing the original problem.
1 vote
Jim McCowan, Agent, Arlington, VA
Wed May 18, 2011
It all depends on the language in the home inspection addendum.
1 vote
Cindy Kidd, Agent, Columbia, SC
Wed May 18, 2011
I would say that depends on when you're having the inspection. If you're having a pre-listing inspection, you are free to get whoever you want to do the repairs. I would suggest using a licensed contractor who will stand behind their work.

If the home is under contract and the home inspection has been performed, the central SC contract states that all repairs will be performed by a licensed contractor. The only way I know to get aroud doing repairs without a licensed contractor would be to state in writing and get the buyer to agree on the repair addendum that repairs will be performed by someone else. Good luck on the sale of your home.
1 vote
David Burnham, , Washington, DC
Wed May 18, 2011
Jim hit the nail on the head. If you have not signed the home inspection addendum yet, make sure it states something like "All repairs will be completed in a workman like fashion." This way you are not required to use a contractor unless code or local building permits require it.
0 votes
Christopher…, Agent, Tarrytown, NY
Wed May 18, 2011
Hi, It sepends on the repairs you are having done. For anything involving plumbing, structure, or electric I would always have someone that is licensed and insured. Don't take chances with your biggest investment.

Christopher Pagli
Licensed Associate Broker
Accredited Buyer Representative
GREEN Designated Agent
William Raveis Legends Realty Group
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Marie Souza…, Agent, Centerville, MA
Fri May 13, 2011
I would use a professional, for sure. That way you can provide receipts for the professional work done & satisfy the Buyers requests.
The Marie Souza Team - Top Selling on Cape Cod
Cape Cod Real Estate Services
Phone: 508-790-2000
0 votes
Suzanne MacD…, Agent, Succasunna, NJ
Fri May 13, 2011
In my opinion that would be the best idea. That way you can provide the buyer with a receipt or invoice from the contractor and they can feel confident the repairs were done correctly and in accordance with the building codes. Having said that, however, I would need to know what repairs, exactly, are being requested. If they are only minor issues you may be able to handle them on your own.

You should also make sure that the contractor gets permits in accordance with your local building codes. I just had a closing that was held up for two to three weeks while the current owners went back and obtained building permits for repairs they did over the past five years or so without obtaining permits. It's very important to follow all the rules and regulations. Failure to do that will impact both your ability to sell the home and the ability of future owners to do so as well.
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