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To Inspect or Not to Inspect: The Value of a Pre-Listing Inspection

In the Bay Area, the spring home-selling season is almost here. As I’m working with my Sellers to prepare their homes for the market, we discuss the concept of a pre-listing inspection as a marketing tool for their homes. These inspections can include a home inspection, roof inspection, pest inspection and sometimes a sewer inspection or pool inspection.

In nearly every selling scenario, I have found a pre-listing inspection to be a great asset to Sellers in the listing process.


1. You’ve Got Nothing to Hide!

A pre-inspection is a gesture of goodwill, sets you apart from other sellers and can give potential buyers peace of mind and confidence as they submit offers.

2. It can smooth the escrow process

A pre-inspection also gives the Seller the opportunity to address potential issues before listing the house which can result in a quicker, less stressful escrow process. If the Seller chooses not to fix all the problems, a pre-inspection lets buyers know what they're getting from the beginning of the process, and they can factor any needed repairs into an offer resulting in a smoother transaction. Knowing potential issues in advance lessens the chance that a house will fall out of contract later in the escrow process because a buyer is already “in the know.”

3. Accentuate the positive!

A pre-inspection can shine a spotlight on your home’s selling points, such as any plumbing upgrades you might have had made. Pre-listing inspections are a great way to highlight infrastructure upgrades and other routine maintenance. A well-cared for home gives buyers greater confidence and may result in a higher sales price.

When not to have a pre-inspection

If you are selling a fixer upper, it’s possible that a pre-listing inspection may not suit your needs. Conversely, if your home is nearly new, an inspection might be unnecessary.

But if you've maintained your home and want to sell it as quickly, and as profitably, as possible or if you simply want to “lay your cards on the table,” a pre-inspection is almost always a good idea.


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