By Kathy Henne
You’ve found the home of your dreams, and you’re preparing to make your offer. As you consider price and terms, be sure to include one of the most critical components of the offer — a home inspection contingency. The contract should clearly identify how any reported habitability problems will be rectified. Habitability means you cannot live in the home because the roof leaks, the plumbing leaks, the furnace does not work, the home has termites or other serious issues. Habitability issues do not include minor, routine maintenance items.
By including a satisfactory inspection in the terms of the contract, you give yourself four valuable options if repairs are needed. You can either a.) Request that the sellers complete the habitability repairs before closing, b.) Negotiate a reasonable price reduction if you expect to pay for the habitability repairs yourself, c.) Request the seller give you a check made out to a contractor to cover the cost of the repairs at closing, or d.) Withdraw from the contract if there are habitability repairs that the sellers is unable or unwilling to repair. The last option isn’t very appealing, especially if you really love the home.
The real estate market has been so hot recently, many buyers would forgo the inspections, just so their offer looked better than all the other offers, or to get the home before prices increased again. You may consider that it could be more financially sensible to make the inspections part of your offer.
Many smart sellers will have all the inspections completed by reputable inspectors when they first put their home on the real estate market and have a copy of the inspection reports available to the buyers when they visit the home. They will have the habitability repairs completed and write on the reports what they did to correct the problems. They will avoid having unhappy inspection surprises when they find their buyer. The buyers will feel more comfortable choosing a home that has had all the inspections completed and the habitability repairs completed. They’ll make an offer on the home with the confidence that they won’t be wasting their time and money on a home that may end up having serious habitability issues. It will save everyone time, money and heartache. Happy buyers and happy sellers make for a smooth transactions.
Contact the Kathy Henne Team RE/MAX FINEST by calling (937) 778-3961.