Getting Ready For a Buyer’s Home Inspection is Smart



How to Prepare For a Home Inspection

Even when you have a buyer and are happy with the offer they’ve made, your home isn’t sold yet. Before you can prepare for your move, you need to get ready for the home inspections.

Preparing for a home inspection will make sure your home sale proceeds as smoothly as possible. Lots of home sellers ask real estate agents how they can prepare for the home inspection. Certainly a wise move from those who do! Home inspections are where most home sales fall through, so it pays to be as prepared as possible.

Let’s take a look at what happens during a home inspection and the things you need to know.

What Happens During Home Inspections

Understanding what to expect from a home inspection is vital. The inspector will walk around the home, both inside and out, examining the property’s structure. They will look at the foundations, walls, doors and windows, electrical and plumbing systems, the roof, the appliances, and the HVAC system.

They will make sure things are working as they should and look for indications of problems. If there is evidence of a water leak, like mold or mildew, they will notice it will be reported to the buyer.

When you are selling a home, understandably, you will be nervous about this process. If something significant is discovered, it could be costly for you. Perhaps you will be asked to repair the problem, or the buyer will look to renegotiate the purchase price.

The results of the inspection could lead to the sale falling through completely, as well. For this reason, the best real estate agents will explain to their clients that home inspections are one of the most significant hurdles to clear before you can pack up the moving truck you rented and head to your next home.

How to Prepare For a Home Inspection
How to Get Ready For a Buyer’s Home Inspection

Preparation For a Home Inspection

To reduce the chances of something going wrong with your sale, there are some things you can do. To be successful in selling a home means keep your eye on what’s most important. Let’s look at what you should do before the inspector arrives at your home.

Give the Inspector Full Access

You should make sure that there aren’t any areas of the home that the inspector can’t access. This won’t look great to the buyer and could suggest hidden problems.

Ensure that areas like attics and basements are easy to inspect and don’t forget access to the furnace. It would be best if you also cleared the immediate outside of the home so the inspector can check the trim and the foundations. This could mean cutting back plants that are close to the house.

Home inspectors will recommend you do this for sure so the house can breathe and you don’t allow pests easy access to the house.

Making Sure Everything Works

The inspector will make sure things are working correctly, so you should do this first and make any repairs necessary. Check the toilets flush correctly; the faucets don’t drip, fans work well and check all the light switches.

Also, make certain that your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors have new batteries. Check that heating ducts are connected as they should be in the crawl space and that the downspouts correctly direct the water away from the home.

Be on the lookout for prior leaks in the ceiling. They were often not leaks, to begin with, but a toilet that overflowed or a kid who left the shower curtain ajar. Ceilings stains are unsightly, and home inspectors are trained to think the worst. Home buyers naturally will as well. You should fix these issues before the inspector finds them.

Replacing Filters is Smart

How well the heating works in your home will be important to the inspector. If the furnace filter hasn’t been replaced in many years, the heating won’t work as well as possible, and the air quality won’t be great either.

Replacing the filter on the furnace or cleaning it will show that the home has been well maintained. A dirty air filter shows a lack of proper maintenance and a lack of pride in the home. Home inspectors will naturally think more problems are yet to be discovered.

Pilot Lights Should Be On

Even if you haven’t turned on the pilot light on your gas fireplace in months, it is important to make sure it works before the inspector arrives. You need to make sure that the fireplace is working in plenty of time to fix it if there is a problem.

The home inspector needs to be able to their job. Part of preparing for a home inspection is making sure they can!

Doors and Cabinets Should Function

Check that all of the internal and external doors in your home are free of problems. Fix any sticking doors, broken handles, and locks.

The doors on kitchen cabinets can frequently become loose or misaligned through use. They are fairly easy to fix, just requiring a few turns of the screws on the hinge, and will make your kitchen look better.

Keep it Clean

Even if you have found a buyer, you shouldn’t forget about keeping your home spotlessly clean. Though this isn’t something that the inspector will necessarily put in their report, it will show them that there are likely to be other problems with the home. If the homeowner doesn’t care to keep things clean, will they care about the maintenance?

Again, think about the pride of ownership. It matters!

On the Day of The Home Inspection

Your home should be looking its best with everything working on the day the home inspector is due to arrive. Leave your utilities on, turn on pilot lights, and leave keys and remotes for the home. Also, leave out documents or bills for repairs and maintenance.

If you have made major improvements to the home, it won’t hurt to leave a list for the inspector to look at. It makes their job easier knowing the ages of major systems in the house.

Check around the home to ensure everything is correct and tidy, with your laundry and dirty dishes cleared away. You should plan to go out before the inspector arrives, taking your dogs with you if you have them.

Final Thoughts on Home Inspection Preparation

The home inspection is a significant part of the majority of home sales. It makes sense to be prepared. You don’t want your sale to fall apart, right? Hopefully, you have found these inspection preparation tips to be useful—best of luck with your inspection.

Other Helpful Real Estate Resources

When buying or selling a home, use these excellent articles to make sound business decisions.

  • What to ask a storage company – do you plan on renting storage space for your upcoming move? When renting from a storage facility, it is smart to ask some pointed questions beforehand. See some of the essential things to ask before committing.
  • Things to know about land loans – are you thinking about buying a piece of land and building your own home? Lots of folks like the idea of building their own custom home. When purchasing land and not building right away, most people opt to get a land loan. See what you should know about land loans in this helpful article.
  • Tips to rent an apartment with bad credit – if you are going out on your own and renting your first apartment, most landlords like to know you have good credit. It can be difficult to land the rental you want when your credit scores are not up to snuff. See how you can increase your chances of being successful in this helpful article.
  • What do lenders consider a good credit score – when getting any kind of loan, your credit scores play a pivotal role in the terms and conditions you’ll receive from the lender. Those who have good credit scores get better treatment. But what is considered a good credit score? Find out in this in-depth article.

Whether buying, selling, or renting knowledge is king. Make sure you keep up to speed with all the most important facets of information surrounding your real estate transaction. Understanding how to prepare for a home inspection is worth your time and effort.

Bill Gassett About Bill Gassett

Bill Gassett is a thirty-two year veteran to the real estate industry. He enjoys writing helpful articles for buyers, sellers and fellow real estate agents to make sound decisions. His work has been featured on RIS Media, National Association of Realtors, Inman News, Placester, RESAAS, Credit Sesame and here at Realty Biz News. He was the #1 RE/MAX agent in Massachusetts for 2018.