If you are planning to sell your home soon, there are many things you need to consider. One of those things is undergoing a home inspection. It is one of the last steps before closing on a new house for buyers. It allows buyers to find out the repairs needed by the house, both big and small, which can make the property safer and more comfortable. During the showing, there are some issues that won’t be obvious. That is why it is essential to pay attention to structural issues, health hazards, and other possible fixes.
A home inspection is also important for sellers as this can let them become aware of the major fixes that the house needs. This way, they will have a chance to fix the issues first before they put the home in the listing. Some sellers might wonder what fixes are mandatory after a home inspection. The simple answer for this is none. From a legal perspective, there are no needed repairs after a home inspection. However, that does not mean sellers can dismiss the home inspection on hand or do not agree to pay for demanded repairs and expect the sale to continue.
If you want to learn more about this, read on as we’re giving you a list of the things that you have to fix after a home inspection.
What Kinds of Issues Should Be Fixed?
After the inspection has been completed and presented to the buyer, they may show a list of demanded repairs for the seller to make before closing the deal. Most of the time, buyers often have a list of “must-have” and “like to have” repairs. This means that if the seller refuses to make the “must-have” repairs, the buyer will not continue with the sale, and the contract will be terminated.
Here are some of the things that may be required to be fixed after a home inspection:
- Cracks that indicate foundation issues
- Old roofing that needs to be replaced immediately or within the next three years
- Infestations of insects or pests
- Faulty electrical, plumbing, and HVAC systems
- Water damage
- Violations of local building codes
- Hazards like electrical, fire, and structural
- Chemical contamination like lead-based paint or asbestos
Should the Seller Pay For All the Repairs?
Remember that repairs and who pays for them are all negotiable during the contact process. Buyers need to weigh the pros and cons before deciding what repairs to request. Sellers, on the other hand, should also weigh their options to know which repairs or concessions will be worth it to them.
There are contracts that include verbosity on how repairs should be handled. Most of the time, sellers are expected to pay for the major repairs and those that involve safety issues, just like what we’ve listed above. This is why many realtors advise their clients to prepare to spend a half percent to one percent of the price of the house on needed repairs.
There can be exceptions, but it is important to discuss potential repairs, as well as current market conditions with the realtor. This way, as a seller, you will have a realistic expectation going into the home inspection and repair requests.
The Common Requests That Buyers Make
In addition to the essential repairs that sellers need to consider, there are also buyers that usually ask for repairs on items that affect the livability of the home. These types of repairs can be handled by the buyer, or sellers can offer alternative concessions, like a discounted price or paying for the home warranty. Here’s a list of the common optional requests that many buyers request:
Doors and Windows
If the seals around doors and windows are broken or rotting, it can affect heating and cooling expenses, including pest control issues. This is a particular problem when it comes to double pane windows, as falling seals can lead to humidity and fogging between the panes.
Outdated wiring and electrical panels are common, especially in older houses. Any electrical issues that are flagged as potential fire or safety hazards should be addressed.
Appliances that do not work well can also affect the livability of the home. That’s why most buyers will request them to be repaired or replaced. However, any appliances that are not included in the sale of the home will be excluded from this. Some of the common issues include non-functioning sink disposal, a leaking dishwasher, and a broken refrigerator.
Heating and Air Conditioning (HVAC)
Air conditioning units require regular maintenance to run their best. Home inspectors may also turn up indicators that the unit has not been serviced or cleaned recently. With this, buyers usually ask that an AC unit be serviced as part of the repairs to ensure that it is in good working condition before they move in.
Aside from the air conditioner, furnace maintenance can also be included, especially in areas where temperatures drop during the winter. Remember that home warranty companies usually require inspection and service of the whole HVAC system before they will give a policy.
Less critical plumbing issues can also arise in a number of places. A slow drain can indicate a backup in the plumbing line that, when left unchecked, could lead to flooding and water damage. In addition to that, water pressure can also become problematic, along with the water heater. These are some of the things that the buyer might also request from the seller to be fixed if there are any problems.
Some damage to the roofing, like soft spots, damaged flashing, and gutter issues, can lead to serious damage if not fixed immediately. However, cosmetic issues are not a concern. Different types of roofs have their own specific issues and costs when it comes to repairs.
What Type of Repairs Should Not Be Asked by a Buyer to Be Fixed?
Here are some of the things that can be considered by the buyer to repair themselves instead of asking the seller to pay for it:
Unless you are buying a new home, every home has its share of usual wear and tear. If a repair is wanted but does not affect the safety of the home, it can be added to the buyer’s to-do list once they move in.
When people buy an existing home, it means there will be a few cosmetic issues to contend with. Some examples are walls that need fresh paint, outdated plumbing fixtures, and old carpets.
Older homes usually need small updates that can be done by the buyer. These include updating smoke detectors and replacing broken or missing electrical plates.
These are some of the things that should and should not be fixed after a home inspection. With fixes after an inspection, there is always some give and take between buyers and sellers. But no matter which side you are on, you need to ensure that you understand your responsibility as laid out in your contract. We hope that this post helped you learn more about what you have to fix after a home inspection.