Congrats on your progress in getting your house sold. This is an exciting time. But, we know it can also be a little bit stressful. We wanted to share 10 tips to help the inspection go smoothly and get you closer to closing this deal! Here are our 10 Tips to Prepare Your Home for Inspections.
Tips to Prepare for Home Inspections
- Provide proper access – For the inspection to go smoothly and reduce the risk and cost of re-inspection please ensure that the electric panel, attic hatch, and sump pump are accessible.
- Make sure electrical components are operational – Make sure that all light bulbs are working, batteries in smoke detectors are working, and needed remotes for lights or fans are available. Any of these things you have working will help reduce the list of concerns that go into the report.
- Trim shrubs, bushes, and trees away from home – This is a routine maintenance issue that often goes neglected. Trimming these things will help your home and allow it to be protected from damage and visible for a thorough inspection reducing potential concerns of the buyer regarding unknown issues.
- Clean gutters and make sure downspouts drain away from foundation – Having clean gutters and making sure the discharge pipes or splash blocks are installed properly reduces a common issue that ends up in the report. Align the splash blocks, secure the discharge pipes, and make sure the downspouts appear to drain away from the home properly.
- Make sure pilot lights are lit and water valves are on – Every buyer would prefer to have major components like plumbing and heating inspected. For liability reasons our company is not allowed to turn on water valves or light gas flames. To ensure a smooth inspection and to keep the transaction moving along be sure that the main water line and the shutoff valves beneath sinks and toilets are all on before the inspection begins. Also, make sure the pilot lights on the furnace(s) and water heater(s) are light before the inspection begins.
- Make sure tub areas are properly caulked – Applying caulk helps to protect the walls and areas beneath tubs and showers. Adding caulk can help protect these areas. This is an DIY task for most home owners. Do it nice clean job and you will reduce the number of items on the inspection report.
- Check all sinks and tubs to make sure drain plugs work and drain freely – Bathrooms can take up a lot of room on an inspection report. Make sure your lift rods and drain mechanisms work and that the drains drain properly. When a draining issue arises it can create a lot of drama for a prospective buyer. If need be, call a plumber to come and repair the issue before the inspection so this does not become an issue on the report.
- Make sure toilets are secure – Toilets often become a concern during inspections when the tank is loose, the bowl is loose, or the flapper does not seal. Take some time to ensure that the toilet bowl and tank are secure, the water fill valve does not leak, and the flapper does not seal. Many of these tasks are novice DIY tasks.
- Have HVAC system serviced and a clean filter – The HVAC system is often one of the greatest concerns people have about buying a home. Have the unit serviced before the inspection and leave the paperwork on the counter to allow the buyer to see that the unit was recently serviced. A dirty furnace with signs of corrosion and dirty fins on the A/C are signs of neglect and will get your unit flagged every time. Have the unit serviced to help the buyer have greater confidence.
- Test every window in your house and make sure it opens – When windows don’t open it can be frustrating to a buyer. A home inspector is generally only going to test a window once. If the window is stuck it will get written. Make sure all the windows work and the buyer will have one less thing to worry about in the transaction.
While these issues are not going to give you a perfect inspection they will reduce the number of items identified in the inspection report and help the buyers and sellers navigate the transaction more efficiently. Best wishes on your upcoming home inspection. And, thank you for allowing Home Partners to access your property for part of the day.