When you get a contract to sell your home, it’s all but inevitable that an inspection will follow. This is a critical stage in the real estate transaction, one where buyers and sellers alike get a clear sense of any issues that need to be resolved before the keys change hands. Obviously, you want your inspection to go well, and for no costly repair needs to be uncovered—but is there really anything you can do to prepare for the inspector’s rigorous evaluation?
The short answer is yes. You may not be able to fix every little issue with the home, but you can certainly make an effort to create a positive impression.
Getting Ready for the Inspection
Here are just a few tips that our North Carolina real estate experts recommend:
· Make sure the inspector has easy access to all the critical areas of your home—attic, basement, crawl space, garage, hot water heater, electrical box, HVAC unit, etc. Don’t make it seem like you’re trying to keep any part of your house shut-off or secret. This can’t help but arouse suspicion!
· Use store-bought drain cleaners to make sure you don’t have any clogs in your drains or toilets.
· Go through your home and replace any light bulbs that are burned out. The goal is to make it clear to the inspector that you take good care of your property, and having a bunch of missing bulbs undercuts that.
· Be sure you have the proper smoke and carbon monoxide detectors in place—and that they have working batteries.
· Deal with any pests in your home, whether ants or carpenter bees. These insects will be a major red flag to the inspector, so it’s really in your best interests to call a pest control company and get rid of the pests in advance.
· Make sure the lawn and garden areas look reasonably neat and tidy—and in particular, make sure you trim any trees that are close to your house. Out of control branches can be a hazard, and they’ll definitely catch the inspector’s eye.
· Test all your electrical outlets, and if you notice that any aren’t working, it may be smart to call an electrician to come check things out. If you don’t do it now, rest assured that the inspector will make note of it.
· If you have any doors or windows that creak when you open and close them, apply a little WD-40 to make them move more smoothly.
In addition to all of that, we’d recommend a good, thorough cleaning—showing the inspector that you have invested in your home and that you work hard to take care of it.
With any additional questions about listing or about the inspections process, we invite you to contact us directly. Minges Cline can assist you in preparing to sell your property, and also in finding another North Carolina residence to call home!