Yesterday I was in a competitive offer situation, that offer included an inspection contingency, this was a very important piece of the transaction for my clients, and rightfully so. The home was older and had no seller disclosure, they wanted to make sure they knew exactly what they were getting into before putting an offer on the home.
We were beat out by an offer that waived the inspection and that got me thinking, I always advise my clients to do an inspection, if timing permits, a pre-inspection is always a good idea but when the timing of that doesn’t work out, then an inspection contingency is a MUST in my book. You never know what you’re getting in to and want to make sure you feel 100% confident that this is the right home for you.
This could be your forever home, this could be a home you’re planning to sell in a few years, but either way you want to be informed. What you can’t see behind walls, in crawlspaces and ducts can really hurt you (black mold for instance) or your bank account. Some repairs you can fix for a small price, others may be costly and take a while. This is not something a new homeowner wants to do!
I had some friends living in a home with black mold, they had no idea their home was covered in black mold, it was an older home and they didn’t find out until their newborn baby was sick often. After stripping down drywall and removing carpets, (basically gutting the home) the problem was corrected, but none of this was cheap!
What to do? If you know it will be a competitive offer situation its really best if you can get an inspector in before you make an offer, worst case you’re out a couple hundred dollars. If you’re ok with the inspection result then you can waive the inspection to make the offer more attractive!
Sometimes sellers also have he property inspected before listing, as a courtesy to buyers, this is always a lovely surprise, sometimes they fix things before listing, other times they don’t but they give the buyers agent access to the report to give to you, that way you can look over the issues and know what you’re buying into.
If time doesn’t permit having a pre-inspection your broker should set up an inspection for 1-2 days after your offer is accepted, for the above mentioned transaction I had an inspector ready to go the next day so that the buyers would have the report as quickly as possible.
Remember, buying a home is one of the biggest decisions of your life, work with your broker, do your homework and make sure that you get good piece of mind and feel confident about potentially buying your new home!