Selling a home can be a stressful experience for most homeowners. Keep Calm and focused on the big picture. When it comes to home inspections, most homeowners aren’t used to having a stranger peer into their attic, open every cupboard and closet or test every appliance. For some, this stress can turn into a major nightmare. While most sellers look at inspectors as the bearers of only bad news, there are some positive factors, as well.
According to the American Society of Home Inspectors, a “home inspection can give the opportunity to make repairs that will put the house in better selling condition.” In addition to this, home inspections can ensure a smooth transaction and assist sellers in receiving the asking price. When the inspector finds major issues, though, some owners may be caught off guard and unsure of how to react.
Check out these three tips for navigating the home inspection process.
Prepare… make a list and check it twice!
When the home inspector comes through and begins pointing out flaws, many homeowners take the comments personally. This is why it’s important to make sure that not only is your house is ready for inspection, but that you are, too. Before the inspection process, it can be helpful to do a walk-through of the home yourself and look at it with a home inspectors eye to see potential issues. For example, take a walk with through the house, and if you see a stain from a leak or a faulty switch, say, “Huh, Do you think I should fix that?” It will give you the opportunity to fix it preemptively.
Be proactive. Get in front of any issues!
Before the inspector arrives, talk with your agent about whether they plan to be in the house during the inspection. If the buyers will also be attending the inspection, the best thing for both parties is to keep the sellers away and occupied for the duration.
If the buyers will not be attending the inspection, it could be beneficial to have the sellers onsite. As the inspector surveys the house, you can calmly address questions about the mysterious stain on the ceiling or why they installed an appliance the way they did. This can help alleviate any tense or awkward moments by keeping attention focused on the conversation, rather than the inspector recording all the things that are wrong with their home.
When the time comes for the actual inspection process, take a minute to remind yourself that the home inspector is simply doing his or her job. Emphasizing this fact can help keep sellers grounded, even when the inspector comments on the improper installation of their favorite fixture. If you do start to get worked up about the inspection or a comment made by a potential buyer, try to redirect attention and remind them about why they’re selling their home in the first place. As much as possible, focus attention on the bigger picture and the end goal: getting the best return on their investment and finding a new home.
Even if you’ve prepared in every way possible, the best laid plans can go awry. The best thing you can do for yourself is to keep calm and focused.