From cleaning to staging, investing in upgrades to making repairs, a home seller’s to-do list is packed.
That’s why it’s no surprise that pre-listing home inspections aren’t exactly at the top of most homeowners’ minds when they’re getting their house ready for the market.
But while a pre-listing home inspection isn’t required, this step does offer benefits that it may make it worth it. Here’s what you need to know about pre-listing home inspections before you put your home up for sale.
What is a Pre-Listing Home Inspection?
A pre-listing inspection is much like the inspection a potential buyer orders during the home sale process. The difference lies in the timing; as its name suggests, a pre-listing home inspection takes place before the home goes on the market.
That way, home sellers can avoid any unpleasant surprises when the buyer’s home inspection takes place.
This type of inspection covers the same areas as a regular inspection, such as foundation, windows, mechanicals, roof, and major systems checks. The inspector will also look for water damage and cracks.
You may choose to add on items such as internal mold, lead paint, radon, or well-water testing.
Depending on where you live and your home’s size, a pre-listing inspection usually costs from $250 to $700. As the home seller, you cover the costs of this type of inspection.
According to Zillow, about 25 percent of home sellers have a pre-listing inspection completed. Along with making improvements and deciding on a price, pre-listing inspections are among the top three activities home buyers do before putting their home on the market. Here’s how it could benefit you.
1. Know Your Home’s True Worth
Why do so many home sellers have a pre-inspection? It’s an easy way to determine what types of repairs you’ll need to do before you try to sell your home.
When a potential buyer has their own inspector come in, you don’t want to be surprised by major repairs or problems. A pre-listing inspection ensures that you know your home’s condition.
That way, you can make any necessary repairs. If you don’t want to make repairs, you can price your home accordingly.
2. Ability to Make Repairs on Your Own Time
Speaking of making repairs, finding out what your home needs through a pre-inspection eliminates the need to rush. When you know what’s wrong before you list, you can take your time and get work done on your own timeline.
If the buyer’s inspection reveals the need for repairs, you’ll be stuck doing it on the buyer’s timeline.
Plus, you’ll be able to prioritize which improvements and repairs you want to do before you list. You can pass on less important issues, such as cosmetic fixes, and focus on big projects like roof, foundation, or HVAC repairs that may be deal-breakers for buyers.
3. Better Marketing
A pre-listing inspection may reveal problems, but you can also use it as a marketing tool. An already completed inspection may entice buyers. It eliminates the unknown, helping improves the buyer’s confidence.
A pre-inspection is a great way to let buyers know about the work you’ve done on the home. Plus, it allows you to show off positive aspects, as well. For instance, if the inspector says your HVAC system is in great shape, that’s good news for buyers.
4. Less Need to Negotiate
A pre-listing home inspection lays it all out. When you’re this upfront with your buyer, they’ll feel less need to negotiate prices and repairs later in the process. When the buyers order their own inspection, there should be no surprises.
Plus, you already know the issues associated with your home, so you’ve priced it accordingly. This gives you a stronger negotiating position.
A pre-listing home inspection offers a number of benefits to home sellers. Not only will you have more power over your sale, but you can also utilize the inspection report as a major selling point.
However, keep in mind that, as the seller, you are responsible for paying for a pre-listing inspection. Also, disclosure laws may require you let buyers know about necessary repairs and problems uncovered during the inspection.
Why not skip the inspection process altogether by selling to HomeGo?
HomeGo purchases homes as-is — no repairs, upgrades, or renovations required. You won’t need to shell out for an inspection of any kind, and your home will close quickly and easily, often within as little as 7 days.