In hot housing markets, your buyers are more anxious than ever to get a bid in on their dream home. And while it’s prudent to submit a conditional offer pending a home inspection, many buyers view this as too risky. Thankfully, there are pre-offer home and property inspection services available that can be carried out before the offer is even submitted to provide added peace of mind to buyers and buyers’ agents.

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If you’re selling a home in a hot market where multiple bids are expected, setting a conditions inspection date is also a great way to ensure any potential buyers who plan on making an offer can have an inspection completed that day to help mitigate risk.

While traditional home and property inspections are completed after the offer has been accepted, there are three more inspection options available to help Realtors and homebuyers better understand the inner workings of the property before an offer is submitted.

Pre-offer inspection services include:

1. Verbal consultation during viewing

The home inspector joins the Realtor and client during the home viewing to provide a live verbal report. While you’re touring the property, the inspector conducts a condensed 45 to 60-minute non-invasive visual survey of the property’s major systems in a limited capacity.

As an advisory service, this delivers some transparency prior to the offer, although it’s not nearly as detailed as a full inspection where inspectors can go on the roof, look into the attic, and so on. We always encourage a full inspection but, in elevated market conditions when a full inspection isn’t plausible, buyers and buyers’ agents need some reassurance and guidance. As an added bonus, after the offer has been accepted, the inspector can return to complete a full inspection at a reduced rate, which will include a digital report, warranty and lifetime appliance safety recall monitoring.

2. Pre-offer property inspection

The inspector completes a full inspection pre-offer, which includes a digital report, warranty and lifetime appliance safety recall monitoring. Major systems are evaluated, including the interior, heating/cooling, electrical, plumbing, exterior and roofing. This comprehensive report becomes the property’s operations manual, which details deficiencies, safety concerns, system shut-off locations and maintenance suggestions.

Complimentary technical advice is included for as long as the client owns the home when they’ve opted for a full inspection service. While having an inspection pre-offer works well for mitigating risk for buyers and buyers’ agents, there’s a growing trend where sellers and sellers’ agents are also setting a conditions inspection date to ensure any potential buyers who plan on making an offer can have an inspection completed that day to help set their minds at ease and gain added confidence in the property.

3. Technical advice during viewing

A professional inspector is your valued partner and a good community member. This means that even if there’s no obligation for you to send business their way, the inspector is available to provide complimentary technical advice. While this has always been offered to any client who has had an inspection with us, we’ve now extended the free technical advice to anyone who wishes to buy a home and has questions. All you or your client have to do is snap a photo/video and text or email it to any inspector, and we’ll offer free technical advice on that questionable issue to help ensure your buyer is confident in making an offer.

Verbal and technical advice pre-inspection services can never replace the value of a full inspection, which not only provides buyers with a list of precautions, safety and maintenance issues, but also helps them understand the inner workings of the property. These advisory systems are, however, extremely helpful in elevated markets when it’s just not possible to have a full inspection completed pre-offer.

3 COMMENTS

  1. Darci’s parting advice, being “Verbal and technical advice pre-inspection services can never replace the value of a full inspection…” (full stop) says it all. Don’t want to take the chance of losing that “hot” property due to time limitation re acquiring a proper inspection?—then don’t take that chance, but realize you’re taking a bigger chance when you cross your fingers and hope for the best re the condition of the property. Accept that you’re engaging in a crap-shoot. If you can do that, and will have enough cash on hand after closing to pay for any repairs that might be needed for your “Dream Home’, then have at it. Just accept that you are prepared to be your own insurance provider.

    I always told my buyer clients to expect repairs being needed within the first year of ownership of their resale purchases. The older the property, the greater the odds that do-it-yourselfers may have had their hands in any so-called upgrades, or repairs, being made to their potential dream homes. I was very often correct, and my clients were never upset when things went that way. Hells bells; many new-home purchasers had/have issues within the first year of ownership of their dream homes. Bottom line: Don’t fall victim to the herd- instinct scenario whereby if everyone’s after a certain property via a bidding war, that you must thereby follow suit. Remember, there’s always another property…maybe even a better one. But if you’re desperate to acquire a certain property, then cast caution to the wind, go for it sans inspection, and don’t complain if you end up with a dog. Know thine self before getting upset, casting blame elsewhere. Be prepared to look in the mirror and, accept who is looking back.

  2. Is this a paid advertisement for Darci Campbell? All of the alternative options scream of a lawsuit on the inspector. Verbal cursory look?? No contract? Nothing in writing? He said? She said? or lets just Inspect a few things? That does not meet the standards of practice of any Association I have been a member of for the past 13 years. We don’t have time to inspect the roof, or HVAC, electrical should be okay? Really? on a $500K investment? Would you not test drive a car before you buy it? My company insurance would be void if offered these partial services. When I am booked to do a quick inspection because there are too many showings booked and we only have access for 30 minutes, I decline the booking. I have had so many calls from buyers who foolishly waived an inspection on “a HOT MARKET PROPERTY” only to have buyers remorse now when many defects have come to light. This is similar to the listing that said “All Electrical up to code” per the listing agent, only to find live knob and tube, and countless handyman installations that were fire hazards. My company prides itself on comprehensive reports and thorough reports and having stayed out of courts for 13 plus years. I would recommend any inspector asked for one of these half baked inspection options decline the business.

  3. In market conditions as of recent, sellers should have a current inspection report along with listing documents. This small investment can save the sellers from any accusation misleading or false information provided during the process of sale. Although most buyers put little value to that report due to paranoid , but it better than nothing.

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