Most home inspections are performed by buyers after they have bought a home. A pre-listing inspection, however, is a little different. It is a home inspection that the seller performs before their home is on the market. But why would you perform a pre-listing inspection to begin with? Here are four compelling reasons:
You Can Make Repairs in Advance
A pre-listing inspection can find problem areas in your home that you may not be even aware of. And if your pre-listing inspection finds these problem areas, then any home inspection a buyer may perform will find them too. By catching these problems early, you can have plenty of time to fix them before you place your home on the market or make potential buyers aware of them before they make an offer. This way, the buyer understands that while the house may be wonderful, it isn’t perfect. The prelisting inspection will tell buyers what the house needs and that a price adjustment has been made for the issues. As such, those issues are taken off the negotiating table and the buyer can then decide if this is the right house for them, reducing the need for last minute renegotiations (see below).
It Reduces the Chance for Re-Negotiations
The buyers put in an offer on a house that they have likely built up in their minds to be almost perfect. Then, when they get the results of the home inspection, there are either a few or many issues and they go back to the seller and want to renegotiate. So now the agents are caught in the middle of the two parties and often so is the home inspector. This creates unnecessary friction and means the house may have to be negotiated twice (and in some cases has to be sold twice) because people are backing out of offers.
It Can Increase Competitiveness
When buyers find out that you performed a pre-listing inspection, they feel safer making a bid on your home. Plus, if your home is one of the few that have had a pre-listing inspection performed in your neighborhood, more buyers are likely to favor your home over the rest. This could increase competition amongst buyers, which in turn could increase the amount of money you get for your home in the end.
It Helps Out the Buyer for the Long-Term
The seller may have many benefits to performing a pre-listing inspection, but it will be the buyer who relies on the inspection long-term. So, as professional home inspectors, our obligation is neither to the seller nor to the buyer, but to the house. We must represent the house fairly, which is why we offer our reports to the buyer. We can then perform a walk-through with that buyer to explain the report to them, explain the house to them, and more.