Congratulations! Your listing is under contract - there is now guarded optimism that the transaction will close. A bright spot is the buyers are pre qualified, or preferably pre approved, so that’s a bit less of an uncertainty these days.
However, on the horizon looms the home inspection, which most agents agree is a dreaded hurdle. What will the issues be, as there are always issues, and how will they be resolved? Encourage your sellers to set a tone of full cooperation with the inspector and let the buyers know their prospective new home has been well maintained.
Include this suggestion list in your listing presentation and then encourage your sellers to check that all items have been accomplished before the inspection date. It might settle their nerves to know the house is ready and give them a feeling of being proactive prior to the inspector’s visit.
For a Smooth Home Inspection
1. Confirm that that the water, electrical and gas services are turned on and that all pilot lights are lit.
2. Repair or replace any broken or missing items, such as doorknobs, locks or latches, windowpanes or screens, gutters or downspouts, or chimney caps.
3. Check that all light bulbs are working to avoid a report that may suggest an electrical problem.
4. Clean or replace dirty HVAC air filters. This speaks to the home being maintained.
5. Test smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, and replace dead batteries. Confirm they are located according to state law requirements.
6. Make sure there is clear access to HVAC equipment, electrical service panels, the water heater, attic and crawlspace.
7. Clear out stored items, debris and wood from the crawl space to allow for easy visual inspection of the foundation.
8. Unlock any areas that your home inspector must access, such as the attic door or hatch, the electrical service panel, the door to the basement, and any exterior gates.
9. Remove any dead trees and trim tree limbs so that they’re at least 10 feet away from the roof. Trim any shrubs that are too close to the house and can hide pests or hold moisture against the exterior.
10. Ideally, pets should be removed from the premises or secured outside so they don’t disturb the inspector and buyer while they are conducting their inspection