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Never underestimate the power of preparing for a home inspection.
Did you know that in July 2017, home prices in Alberta averaged at $400,000? This represents a 1.8% decrease from the average 12 months before.
As for February to March this year, the real estate market has shown a 3.3% increase for newly listed homes. It also showed a 1.3% rise in nationwide home sales.
What do all these numbers tell you? That competition is tough, especially when you’re in the market as a seller.
It’s for this reason that preparing for a home inspection should be taken seriously. This can make all the difference between a home that you can sell right away and one that stays on the market for months.
And remember, the longer a home stays on the market, the harder it can be to get it off the market. So, follow these tips to ensure you prepare your home properly for inspection!
A buyer can have more control over your home’s selling price when you don’t prepare your home for an inspection. How so?
Because the home inspector will let them know of all problems with your home’s heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC), roof, floors, and windows and doors among other structural components.
After all, locating these issues is the main reason for home inspections. From here, they may ask you to either fix the issues first prior to the sale or lower your asking price.
From a buyer’s perspective, it’s a way to ensure their purchase is indeed in good condition. They want to make sure they won’t have to shell out more money on major home repairs (think leaky plumbing or roof, mould, and mildew, sagging floors, etc.).
As a seller, a St. Paul AB real estate inspection gives you the chance to carry out needed repairs before a buyer sees an opportunity to ask you to lower the selling price.
Simply put, inspection is key to putting your home in the best possible selling condition. This then helps you close the sale sooner. Or if you haven’t found a buyer yet, gives you a competitive edge in the home selling market.
Now that you know how valuable home inspections are, let’s get on with how to ensure your home is ready for inspection!
Providing easy access to areas for inspection is the first step to passing the test. After all, how can inspectors thoroughly examine the spots under the sink (for leaks and moulds) or the electrical panels if they can’t get past the clutter?
As such, before the scheduled inspection, remove as much of the clutter as possible. This includes boxes, old furniture, unused appliances – anything at all – that can hinder access to the plumbing, HVAC, breakers, and ceiling.
Better yet, set aside an entire day to carry out “spring cleaning“. This’ll make your home easier to thoroughly inspect and prettier in the eyes of the buyer.
If you have an attic, it pays to ready an easy way for inspectors to get up and into it.
This can be as simple as moving stuff away from the entrance and clearing a path for the inspector to move around in. If there are no stairs leading directly to the attic, then a sturdy ladder will do.
The important thing is, make it as easy for inspectors to do their job properly and thoroughly.
When preparing for a home inspection, remember every inch of your property will undergo scrutiny.
You don’t want a note in the report saying something that the inspector was unable to examine areas because they didn’t have access to it. Nor do you want to get a call from the inspector asking you to come back and give them access to locked rooms.
There’s no need to worry about your home’s security when it comes to home inspectors. The fact that all Alberta home inspectors need a professional license should be enough for you trust them and leave all doors unlocked for them.
Making sure that all light bulbs work doesn’t just let the home inspector do a more thorough job. It also prevents opening a can of worms signalling your home has an electrical issue!
Even a single non-working bulb can already indicate faulty wiring. So, it’s best you check all of them (and replace burnt out or dim ones) before the inspection.
If you have the time and budget, fix problem areas you’re already aware of. Start with the ones that home inspectors prioritize: the HVAC, roof, and plumbing.
When preparing for a home inspection, keep in mind that the average cost of repairs is only between $280 and $700. This may seem a lot for you to spend, but it’s a worthwhile expense. How so?
The HVAC system is a primary inspection area. So, when yours has a problem, expect the home inspector to note all issues down in the report. This then gives the buyer a chance to bring your home’s selling price down.
We’re talking about leaks in the roof and the plumbing system. These are all signs of structural damage. And just like with a problematic HVAC, all these can land you a negative home inspection report.
Leaky roofs and plumbing components, as mentioned above, signal a compromised structural integrity.
For instance, roof leaks can mean serious roof damage — and roofs are one of the most expensive things to replace, averaging at about $8,000. More than that though, leaks can also mean potential dampness and mould issues.
Always remember that excess indoor moisture levels almost always mean moulds. In Canada, where health experts consider mould as huge health hazards, roof and plumbing leaks can make buyers not wanting to push through with the sale anymore.
If you don’t have the resources to fix what’s mentioned in tip #5, then make sure you disclose the details to the home inspector. It may seem counterintuitive, but it acts in your favour – both the inspector and buyer will regard you as genuine and honest.
Again, it’s best you have these issues fixed prior to the inspection. However, if you can’t, but you fully intend to before completing the sale, then let the inspector know.
On the other hand, be sure to provide the inspector documents about recent repairs. It’s especially helpful if you have documentation of a recent inspection done by an engineer.
You should begin preparing for a home inspection as soon as you’ve decided it’s time to sell the house. You may think that you can ready the house within just a few days, but this will only lead to you forgetting many of the most important stuff. Also, the sooner you prepare, the more time you have to double check everything before the inspector comes.
Want more St. Paul AB real estate tips and tricks like this? Then make sure you check our blog out. We’ve got more useful strategies waiting for you there.