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A Home Inspection is not a Vendetta

A Home Inspection is to uncover Major Defects and Safety Issues. On an existing home,

a home inspection is not a Honey Do list, directing a Seller to make their home like new.

If it was a new home, it would cost more. If it were totally upgraded, renovated, brought up to 100% of what a new home in the neighborhood is selling for, it would be selling for the same amount, not $100,000 less than the neighborhood average.

Price a Home right and it will sell

But even when a home is priced right, some Buyers and some Buyers Agents do not understand the purpose of a Home Inspection. It is clearly stated in our Standard Agreement of Sale -

If buyer is not purchasing a newly constructed home, the Property may have minor problems associated with a previously owned property. A major defect is any deficiency that causes an item to perform in an unsafe manner or that prevents the item from performing its intended function. The inspection shall be limited to the house, attached or detached garage(s), improvements attached to the house or garage(s) and the electrical, plumbing, wastewater/septic system, well, heating, air conditioning, and any other electro-mechanical systems, appliances and equipment included in this sale.

Nothing in the contract indicates that the home has to be in perfect, like new condition. In fact, it specifically states that-

Seller shall deliver the Property in substantially the same physical condition as of the date of this Agreement unless repairs are agreed to as part of the inspection processes explained in paragraphs 20, 21 and 22. However, the electrical, plumbing, wastewater/septic system, well, heating, air conditioning, and any other electromechanical systems, appliances and equipment included in this Agreement shall be in operating condition at time of final settlement unless otherwise disclosed in the Sellers Disclosure of Real Property Condition Report Form or elsewhere in this Agreement of Sale. Sellers responsibility for these items shall expire at the time of settlement.

If it is included, it must work. Nowhere does the contract stipulate that minor maintenance issues or repairs are within the scope of the State document.

Dont be a Bully

A Buyers Agent should absolutely advocate for their client. Advocate hard, but manage your clients expectations. Explain the law, explain the process, go over all the contract forms but do not participate in bullying or abusing the other party. says Kathy Sperl-Bell, Broker/Owner of Active Adults Realty. Often this happens to elderly sellers. Their backs are in a corner, they go way out of their way to be accommodating to a buyer, they may even accept a contingent offer but then they get a ridiculous demand for repairs that are not major issues or safety related. By that time, they have moved forward, made their plans and end up agreeing to things they never should have been liable for. Yes, sometimes the bullies win.

We work with a lot of Buyers and education is a big part of our role. People dont know how this business works and they sometimes have unreal expectations. It is up to us to explain things and be professional. Abuse is not a part of our service.

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