8 Reasons Why A Pre-Listing Home Inspection Is A Great Idea!

March 8, 2023


If you are considering selling your house this year, and your Realtor® has suggested you have a pre listing inspection, you may be wondering why you should get one!  After all, the buyer will probably do their own inspection of the house when they go under contract!  And it will cost you money to get it done!  And if you don’t choose to make the repairs, you are probably going to have to now disclose everything that is found on the prelisting inspection!  Besides, this is still a hot seller’s market in Richmond, Virginia so why should you do a pre-listing home inspection?

Obviously, I don’t expect that every seller will be willing to do the pre listing inspection!  There are some good reasons why you may not want to do one – you are aware that the house needs a lot of work and you are planning to sell it as is; you are okay with waiting to see what the buyer’s home inspection turns up!

But if you choose to do a pre listing inspection, you may be wondering how different it will be from the one the buyer will be doing – the answer is, not different at all – the only difference will be who the inspector is hired by!  But there are a lot of good reasons for getting one done before you list your home!  Here are my reasons for suggesting it to my sellers.

It Allows You To Understand The Condition Of Your Home

You may have lived in your home for a number of years and know what the problems on your home are.  But a buyer’s inspection may turn up problems you weren’t even aware of!  By knowing what the actual condition of your home is before you put it on the market allows you to head off any possible issues that could derail your transaction!

You Can Get Ahead Of The Repairs

In today’s market, it is not unusual for a good contractor or repair person to be booked up for weeks or even months!  If there is a major problem, or even a lot of little ones, you can decide which ones you want to repair, which ones you don’t and then decide when you want to put the house on the market!

Helps You Price Your Home Accurately

Even if you choose not to repair those items found on the pre-listing inspection, getting accurate costs for the repairs found will help you price your home accurately and will help reinforce your asking price.  Buyers tend to overestimate the actual cost of doing a repair – this will let buyers know what the repair issues are that are in the house and will allow them to see what the actual repair costs will be after closing!  Even if you choose to do the repairs needed, you can now make the buyers aware of the repairs that were done before listing the house so it can reinforce your asking price!

Lets Your Agent Better Market Your Home

A home inspection report does two things:  will detail all the issues with the home, but could also draw the buyer’s attention to any positives about the house!  For instance, if the roof on the house is in excellent condition with many good years of life on it, this may be noted in the pre listing inspection report.  Your agent can then use this to market your home and help to build trust with the buyers.

Your Home Will Attract Serious Buyers

The information offered to the buyer in the pre listing inspection report and any repair receipts will help cast away any doubts about the house.  Their interest in your home could be a sign that they are serious buyers and want to move forward.

It Can Save The Seller Money

This may seem counter intuitive – after all, you have to pay for the inspection, then pay to complete repairs on the house!  But there are 2 reasons why having a pre listing home inspection can save you money:

  • First, by being aware of and disclosing any known property issues up front as well as any repairs that have been completed prior to listing the home, the seller is now making it known that consideration for these items is already factored in to the price and takes them off the negotiating table.
  • Second, this now gives the seller the choice to repair the issues prior to listing, by the contractor of their choice, which then gives the seller more control over the costs.

There May End Up Being Less Negotiation on Repair Issues

Even though the buyer may do their own inspection, should the buyer’s inspector find any new issues, you can now compare it to your pre listing inspection report, and, if need be, ask your inspector to come back for another consultation.

Lets You Prepare For FHA, VA and VHDA Appraisals

Many buyers, especially first time home buyers, may use financing such as FHA, VA and VHDA.  Appraisals on these types of loans are different than if the buyer is getting a conventional loan.  There may be some repair issues that may be noted on the appraisal that would then be required to be repaired prior to closing.  Knowing these things up front will help you avoid any unnecessary surprises!

Per the National Association of Realtor, in 2021, 11% of the delayed closings and 9% of the contract terminations were due to inspection issues!  I normally recommend my sellers to do a pre listing inspection!  

Have questions?  Thinking of selling your home?  Want a recommendation to a good home inspector?  Feel free to contact me – no obligation, no pressure!