One of the often contentious issues regarding the sale of a property is the attainment of a satisfactory home inspection report. This aspect of selling a home or condo need not be the confrontational situation that it sometimes turns out to be and sometimes it’s not the property but rather the REALTORS® and or the home inspector that is to blame.
Most Agreements of Purchase and Sale threes days will contain a home inspection condition which has been inserted on behalf of the Buyer. What does this condition stipulate? The condition is worded as such that the offer is “conditional” upon the Buyer obtaining a home inspection report that is satisfactory to the Buyer in the Buyer’s sole and absolute discretion. Failing this, the offer can become null and void and the Buyer’s deposit is returned in full to the Buyer without deduction. In the event issues with the home are uncovered during an inspection, there are several remedies which can be made so as to keep the Agreement alive.
Sometimes when representing a Buyer where we have completed a home inspection, the Seller’s REALTOR® will call me asking, “..did the house pass the home inspection?” A home inspection is not a test. There is no passing or failing. A home inspection is simply a report detailing as best as the inspector can following a visual inspection, the condition of the property at that point in time. No home is perfect not even new or ultra expensive ones. One home inspector that I use and respect, often does inspections on homes in new subdivisions. Time and again he has found the same issues in most if not all homes built by a particular builder. It’s not necessarily a fault or even a building code violation, it’s just a repetitive characteristic found in these homes or condos that may pose a problem down the road or may detract from the energy efficiency of the property etc.
Just as a home inspection is not meant to be a test, it’s also not meant to be a ways and means of driving down a previously agreed to price. Often Sellers approach the home inspection condition with fear and trepidation and that need not be the case. Again when home inspections create problems, it’s often the REALTOR® or the home inspector that is to blame. In my next post I will cover what Sellers can do in preparation for the inevitable home inspection and some of the available options that Buyers and Sellers have when addressing items of concern that has arisen during the home inspection process.