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Endless Inspections

Endless Inspections

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Ask Phyllis: a blog series of frequently asked real estate questions.

Dear Phyllis,

We had our home on the market pre-covid and the buyer did so many inspections it was ridiculous. His agent was part of a big team and I think they wanted to prove a point or something. Our home, built in 1940, is hardly new. They had the regular inspector and a termite inspector which I expected. Then they had a foundation inspector, fireplace inspector, sewer inspector, electrician, and a roofer. After their endless inspections, they wanted a $50,000 credit. The buyer and his agent acted as if our home was ready to be condemned.

We cancelled escrow. Our agent had us contact a reputable electrician and we had the electrical and termite repairs done. The roof is older but intact and not leaking. The sewer line is working so I don’t see a need to fix that. We repaired the fireplace damper and corrected some plumbing issues that the general inspector noted. Now our agent says we need to disclose all the previous buyer’s inspections even though we fixed a lot of the items. This doesn’t seem reasonable. In short, what do you suggest?

Disgusted

Dear Disgusted,

Congratulations, on being so proactive! I understand a buyer wants to know the condition of the home they are purchasing. But it is their real estate agent’s job to educate them that everything in a home has a life expectancy. Just like their car. So, I agree, unless broken why fix it?

I am not a real estate attorney and can’t offer legal advice. But I do agree with your Realtor that you need to disclose the previous buyer’s reports and inspections. Likely the simplest way to do this is to have a pre-inspection. You can hire your own inspector and give their report to the new buyer. You and your agent can decide if you want to do this before or after an offer is written.

Assuming your new buyer performs their own inspection, it may be best to disclose the previous reports after. If they don’t hire their own inspector, disclose the previous reports after disclosing your new inspection. Ask your Realtors opinion. Personally, I think this will be less confusing as much of what was wrong was already corrected.
Best of luck with your sale!