If you’re selling a home in Lakewood or Long Beach, you need to know that potential buyers are going to send in a home inspector—and it’s usually helpful to know what that inspector is going to look for (and how to head off potential issues before they cause you to lose a “done deal”).
What Does a Home Inspector Do?
A home inspector, who’s typically someone hired by the buyer, will come through your house to check out all its systems and the way it’s built. The inspector will assess damage, construction problems, and wear-and-tear.
The inspector is impartial. He or she doesn’t care whether you sell your home (or whether his or her clients buy it).
Should You Hire a Home Inspector When You’re Selling Your Home?
Some sellers choose to hire a home inspector before they put their homes on the market, but many feel it’s an unnecessary step (and expense). If you suspect your house has problems that the buyer’s inspector will catch, it can be a good idea to bring someone out to have a peek before you list your home—that way, you can fix existing and potential problems before they derail your deal.
What Happens During a Home Inspection?
The inspector will usually begin outside your home, looking for structural issues and examining the foundation. He’ll also look for grading problems to make sure the yard doesn’t flood, and he’ll check the downspouts and gutters to see how well they drain (and ensure they drain away from your foundation).
Inside, the inspector will check each room in the house to check whether the doors and windows open properly, to see if the walls are straight, or whether there’s any evidence of water damage (like a freshly painted ceiling, which can be used to cover up damage done by a leak in the roof).
In the kitchen, the buyer’s inspector will look at range hood fans, electrical outlets, faucets, and cabinets and drawers.
In the bathroom, drains, toilets, shower heads, and tubs are the main focus.
Throughout the rest of the home, the inspector will evaluate pipes, water heaters, drains, and water pressure, electrical panels, light switches, and outlets. Heating vents (and their placement) are important, as are leaning walls that might indicate bad framing.
Should You Walk Around the House With the Inspector?
As the seller, unless you’re the one who hired the home inspector, you should steer clear of the home inspector. The buyers can (and should) tag along during the inspection, but if you’re there, you’re not likely to help the situation. If you did hire the inspector, though, it’s a good idea to accompany him or her around the house to make note of what’s wrong, what could use improvement, and what’s in good shape.
What Happens After the Inspection?
The home inspector gives his or her clients a detailed report that includes every issue that arose during the inspection. The buyers can then use that report to negotiate with you. For example, if the inspection showed that your HVAC system was on the verge of breaking down or that you had a leaky pipe beneath the kitchen sink, the buyers could request that you repair or replace the necessary parts or lower your asking price.
Do You Need to Talk to a Lakewood Realtor About Selling Your Home?
If you’re selling your home in Lakewood or Long Beach, we’re here to help. Call us at 562-882-1581 for a free home valuation—we can tell you how much your home is worth on today’s market in its current condition.
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