Barry Stone, Seller's disgruntled about home inspection

Originally published at NewsOK

by Barry Stone

DEAR BARRY: As a homebuyer, I can understand the benefits of a home inspection. But for sellers, it's very different. In fact, there is something about the whole process that is frustrating and unfair.

I just spent a month negotiating with the buyers over the sales price and terms for my home. After all this haggling, we finally reached an agreement and opened escrow.

Then came the home inspection report, and the buyers began asking for further concessions and price reductions. Now it seems that we have no deal after all. Isn't there some way of preventing this kind of double dealing?

— Kendal

DEAR KENDAL: Your frustration is understandable and has been experienced by many home sellers, but I wouldn't call it “double dealing.” Apparently, no one explained to you how the process works, so here are the basics.

When a purchase agreement is signed, it is based upon information that is known at the time and is contingent upon the buyers' acceptance of findings by the home inspector. In the aftermath of a home inspection, renegotiation typically takes place because new information about the condition of the property has been revealed. This means that the deal you worked so hard to finalize, during weeks of negotiation was tentative at best.

When buyers obtain a home inspection, they use it for their own benefit, to enjoy a second round of concessions by the sellers. To circumvent this process, some sellers hire an inspector of their own when the property is listed for sale. This enables them to present full disclosure of the property's condition to each prospective buyer, before negotiations begin.

By obtaining a presale inspection, sellers accomplish four valuable objectives:

• Purchase offers are based upon a full knowledge of the property's condition. Once an agreement is reached, the sale can proceed without second-stage negotiations.

• A pre-sale inspection report exceeds the legal requirements for seller disclosure. This reduces the likelihood of future liability for undisclosed defects.

• A pre-sale inspection report demonstrates to buyers that the sellers have nothing to hide. This promotes an environment of confidence and trust in which to negotiate the terms of a sale.

• Buyers are usually more willing to accept property defects that are initially disclosed, rather than discovered in the course of the transaction. When faulty conditions are discovered later in the escrow process, buyers typically demand repairs at sellers' expense.

The case for presale home inspections is a strong one. Only a small percentage of sellers have recognized these advantages. Some Realtors suggest this to their sellers, but with little favorable response. Hopefully, more agents will promote the idea and more sellers will see the benefits of taking control of the disclosure process.

To write to Barry Stone, go to www.housedetective.com.

Date : 2/10/2018