Are Pre-Listing Inspections a Good Idea?
Pre-listing inspections are not advisable, says June Fletcher, a housing columnist at The Wall Street Journal. She says that while the inspection gives sellers an idea of the home’s strengths and weaknesses, it also requires sellers to disclose those problems that they don’t intend to fix.
As Fletcher says, if the seller is “blissfully unaware,” the issue may not come up in the seller’s inspection. If it does, the buyer has already made a commitment and that puts the seller in a stronger negotiating position.
Fletcher says she knows this runs counter to the advice most practitioners would give, but practitioners might have some degree of self-interest in the decision “since if buyers discover a defect that wasn’t disclosed up front, they’ll be more inclined to blame (and sue) the inspector than the [practitioner,]” she says.
Source: The Wall Street Journal, June Fletcher (05/15/2010)