No one likes to get bad news, especially if you are in the process of selling your house. Keep reading for some tips to sell your home after receiving a bad house inspection report.
Naturally, it can be really upsetting to get a bad report after your home inspection. Home inspections are designed to give the buyer an accurate view of the condition of the home. Sometimes home inspections can reveal things that even the seller did not know about their own house and put a damper on the buyer’s enthusiasm. The good news is that you as the seller do have options, even if you need to sell your home for cash.
Tips to Sell Your Home After Receiving a Bad House Inspection Report
Don’t let bad news get the best of you
Don’t get overly upset about the home inspector’s report. Take a minute to breathe and take a third person view of the news. If you have already put a lot of work into your home in hopes that it will sell, it is easy to get frustrated when another problem is found. On the bright side, it’s actually a good thing that the home inspector caught those problems before sale so you don’t get sued later on. Above all, you need to realize that you have options even when there are big issues wrong with your home.
Don’t jump to conclusions
Wait for your buyer to ask for changes to be made, don’t assume what they want. Some buyers are prepared to make improvements on their own. They may have plans for the home that will make the problem a non-issue anyway. If they are already planning to have a new HVAC system installed, then they may not be worried about duct issues.
Remember that your home inspection report is not a to-do list
Your home inspection is a detailed description of the state of your home. It is not a test that you pass or fail. It is good to look over the inspection and mentally prepare for things that you think your buyer may ask to be fixed, but you don’t have to fix everything. No home is going to be absolutely perfect (unless it is brand-new) so don’t worry about cosmetic or small wear and tear issues. Absolutely wait until your buyer asks for something before you make any steps toward repairs. Otherwise, you may be spending money for no reason.
Get quotes from your own repair experts
Once your buyer submits their requests for what they want fixed, it is important for you to get an accurate understanding of the cost and time needed for all repairs. Do not commit to anything before getting your own quote from a repair expert. Your buyer may say that they want $2,000 credit to address a plumbing issue but if you can get it fixed for $1,500 then you just saved money. Also, there are some things that may just be impossible for you to fix due to time or cost. Get a knowledgeable repair quote so you know what is possible for you before you commit yourself to fixing anything.
Once your buyer has told you what they want and you know what you can do, it is time to negotiate. You do not have to do everything that your buyer wants you to do. Compromise is the name of the game, especially when you can’t afford to fulfill all of your buyer’s requests. Offering to make repairs to most of the buyers’ list is a great way to avoid a task that you can’t do.
You can also offer to give the buyer a credit off of your asking price. For example, if your buyer wants new carpets due to some water damage, you can offer them an allowance of $1,500 towards getting new carpet once they buy the house. This saves you the hassle of getting it done yourself, and they are able to get exactly what they want.
Be ready to offer a home warranty as a negotiating tool. They usually cost around $500 and help to offer a security blanket against anything that may go wrong with appliances or systems during the first year. Be sensitive to what your buyer wants and be willing to barter in that area. For example, if they request a plumbing fix but you can’t afford it, you could offer to leave your refrigerator to appease them. This tactic is a good reason to never tell them whether you plan to leave your appliances early on in the process.
Depending on what your home inspector finds, you may lose your buyer. If you have extensive issues like plumbing problems, water damage, termites or electrical problems, you may not have the money to repair your home to be attractive to buyers. Labeling your home “sold as-is” is often interpreted as “this home has serious problems” by potential buyers. If you can’t find a traditional buyer, you can sell your home for cash.
Cash home buyers will take home as-is since they are not moving into it. Even if your home has major problems with plumbing, electricity or water damage, you can still sell it for cash. Contact Ben if you need to sell your home for cash.