BOULDER – Most homebuyers have a general understanding of the home inspection process but may not be clear on what occurs after the inspection is complete. Finding deficiencies in a home prior to continuing with a home purchase is a crucial element in any real estate purchase. Once the homebuyers receive the inspection report, they will have to make decisions regarding needed repairs or whether they are still interested in purchasing the property.
After reviewing this inspection report detailing the structural and cosmetic condition of the home, buyers will need to decide if the repairs are serious enough to discontinue the purchase, or minor enough to continue to closing. If the buyers decide to proceed with the sale, they may also request that the seller repair specific items. Many buyers prefer to ask for a reduction in the asking price and do the repairs themselves. If as buyers you choose this option, ask your home inspector which repairs need to be done right away, and do them. Major repairs to plumbing, electrical, or HVAC require a permit. If a project is too small to require a permit, maybe it shouldn’t be part of the negotiations.
As a seller you are not required to fix anything. You can, for example list all known issues with the house in disclosures and note them as part of the asking price. In most cases however, there will be negotiations as to what the seller will repair or a reduction in the asking price of the home.
Generally speaking, no house is perfect and the inspection report is not a to-do list for the sellers. Most buyers and sellers end up addressing problems found in an inspection before closing or by including money in the final agreement to pay for any major repairs. Most buyers are also sellers. If the sellers are not willing to negotiate the resolution of items on an inspection report the sale may fall through. Any issues found listed on and inspection report with then need to be disclosed any future buyers.
If you are selling your home you can have a pre-listing or “sellers” inspection done prior to listing the property. You would then have the option of deciding to repair or replace items on the inspection report or list them in disclosures. If buyers see that you have recently repaired or upgraded things they may feel more secure about the rest of the house.