Bad home inspection...where to go from here?

Asked by Ms, Massachusetts Mon Mar 8, 2010

Before we put our home on the market, we had a home inspection done on it by a reputable inspector. He found a few minor things that we addressed...but other wise he said the house was in good shape and that we had done all the right renovations on it.

We signed a contract to purchase with a buyer that had been out of the housing market for 18 years. The buyer had the home inspected by a local guy with a very tough reputation (so we are told). Now the buyer is backing out due to the home inspection.

The buyers absolutely refused to give us any information as to what the inspector found. They just said that they weren't happy with what was reported and don't want to buy the house. We have no way of knowing what should be fixed or what issues the inspector found because they were told not to divulge anything to us (the sellers)! Our agent couldn't get their agent to budge on giving her some idea as to the problem!

Where do we go from here? Do we hire another inspector? Help!

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9
Voices Member, , Chicago, IL
Tue Mar 9, 2010
BEST ANSWER
To clarify, more than likely yes, the buyers found another property in which they liked better and are using the inspection as a way to back out or just had buyers remorse. My concern though is that what if there is a potentially major defect found that could be hazardous to the seller (Ms). Yes I agree with others that it's not worth spending too much time and effort trying to get this buyer back (clearly they do not want to purchase the home). However, as an owner I would like to know if an inspection found something wrong with my home that I was previously unaware of.

Put yourself in Ms's situation. If you were selling your home and buyers backed out refusing to tell you what the inspection revealed wouldn't you maybe want to know what was in that inspection report? We could all tell ourselves that it's buyers remorse or they found a better home but part of you would still want to know for sure that nothing is wrong with your property.
0 votes
Ms, , Massachusetts
Tue Mar 9, 2010
Thanks to all for responding. And thanks to Mr. Crannell for voicing much better than I did about what concerned us about being left in the dark on the issues the inspector found.

Quick Update. We did get one snippet from the buyer's agent. She told us that the inspector questioned whether the electrical box was up to code. It's the box that was here when we bought the house. We had made no changes to it. So we hired a local licensed electrician for $80.00 to come and look at the box and tell us what's wrong. He inspected it and told us the box was in fact perfectly fine/safe and up to code. He wrote us an invoice that said so. So we can have it for the next inspection.

Also, the inspector the buyers hired required them to sign a confidentiality agreement not to release the report or information in it! I was under the impression when you buy an inspection, the report becomes yours to do with what you want! Anyway...according to our agent, he does this so that the next buyer who signs a contract to purchase on our house cannot use the report in any way! (Note we live in a very small town).

I've sold 3 houses before this one and have never encountered anything like this!

Good news is we have moved on. We are having an open house on Sunday and two brokers have already contacted our agent for showings!
1 vote
Brian McMurr…, Agent, Tawas City, MI
Tue Mar 9, 2010
This situation sometimes happens. Often it's because the Buyer got cold feet (buyer's remorse) or sometimes they found a different home they like better. Or perhaps there was an inspection issue that concerned them. In any event - if they aren't sharing the specifics of the inspection I would just move on and work with the next buyer. If you're comfortable with your inspector and the job he did why do another inspection?
1 vote
wingnut_98, , Martinsburg, WV
Mon Feb 3, 2014
I can say if you do decide to hire another and your in the Martinsburg, WV area I can say from experience. Don't use Onsight Home Inspections.
DO NOT ALLOW THIS INDIVIDUAL IN YOUR HOUSE FOR INSPECTIONS!!!! He messes with systems he has little, if not no knowledge of at all. Then when he breaks them makes you pay for it by denying he even touched it. Even when he was being watched doing it. He will say something is either to big or to small even when it is what is provided by the manufacturer. Had a MASTER electrician wire the house and this so called inspector, insulted and made hits for electrical items that were not even required by code. Speaking of code, many of his idiotic "hits" were within code at time of building, but he seems to think you need to keep your house within code at all times, like an annual check. I WOULD DARE TO SEE HIS HOUSE. IN CODE? Probably some shack. His mishandling of some items cost the home owner large amount of money to repair his damage. Also almost burnt up a motor by putting excessive strain on the item,,, sure it will burn if you go against the grain. That is just a couple reasons not to use this one. In closing, if I ever found out this so called "house inspector" was scheduled to inspect one of my houses... he would be kicked off my property without hesitation.
0 votes
Daryl & Brig…, Agent, Garden City, KS
Tue Mar 9, 2010
Sounds like they might be using the inspection period to back out of the deal for any number of reasons. Don't get hung up on this, if you know your home is solid then just move on, don't take it personal.
0 votes
Mack McCoy, Agent, Seattle, WA
Mon Mar 8, 2010
You can't force the buyers to share the results of the inspection, so, you let them go, and wait for another buyer.

I know it's difficult, but you can drive yourself crazy wondering and speculating about what MIGHT be in the report. Do yourself a favor - let it go. If a prospective buyer asks why the first ones went away, you can tell them the truth - they had their inspection period, and they just walked away without explanation.
0 votes
Alma Kee, Agent, Tampa, FL
Mon Mar 8, 2010
Hi Ms,

If your contract allows the buyer to cancel and doesn't require them to give you a copy of the report then the buyers probably just found another property they liked better.

Find another buyer. Should be easy with the first time homebuyer tax rebate about to end. Get it back on the market asap.
0 votes
Ms, , Massachusetts
Mon Mar 8, 2010
We are only under contract to purchase (with a $1000 deposit)...subject to a satisfactory inspection. We were due to sign the P&S today (with a $22,000 deposit)..but the buyer's backed out of the deal due to items in the inspection report.

They were told by their inspector not to give out copies of the report to anyone!

I don't really think there is anything a lawyer can do. Besides, what's the point of going after a $1000 deposit. I'd rather have a copy of the report, but we didn't pay for it, the buyer did.
0 votes
Voices Member, , Chicago, IL
Mon Mar 8, 2010
This doesn't seem to make much sense. If you are under contract and the buyers then back out, your attorney needs to know the specific reason for WHY they are backing out. Speak with your attorney and have them find out specifically what was wrong with the property. There are other legal things here that should require the buyers to inform you of the defects but your attorney will address all of that since they would know more than myself.
0 votes
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