Are you selling your single-family home? As a seller, you should understand that selling a home isn’t as simple as handing over the deed. There is a variety of steps involved in the selling process, including the home inspection.
A home inspection helps potential homebuyers pinpoint potential issues that aren’t apparent on paper. Simply put, it lets them see the property in person, so they can spot issues, raise their concerns, and compel the seller to address them prior to closing. If these issues aren’t addressed, the seller may have a hard time proceeding with the sale.
Repairs are classified as mandatory and non-essential. The former refers to issues that need to be addressed prior to closing, while the latter contemplates repairs that are open to negotiation — in other words, it’s up to your discretion. As a seller, you should be more concerned about mandatory repairs.
What repairs are mandatory after an inspection?
Technically, there’s no such thing as a “mandatory” repair. Home inspections can cause all sorts of concerns to turn up. Some repairs are critical to deem the home habitable, while others are simply small issues that need no attention. Essentially, sellers can choose not to conduct repairs, however, they may lose the chance to sell their property to potential clients.
However, it is worth mentioning that sellers can be obligated by the state and by lenders to conduct repairs for the sale to proceed. In general, these mandatory repairs are structural, such as:
- Moisture damage
- Mold infestation
- Pest infestations
- Structural damage (e.g. roof and foundation)
- Plumbing issues
- Faulty electrical system
- Faulty heating and cooling system
Some states such as Florida have “as-is” contracts wherein the seller does not have to conduct repairs. Under an as-is contract, buyers can buy the home in its current condition, but they can choose not to proceed in case they find out that the property has far too many issues. Sellers can also choose to sell their property under a standard contract, in which they agree to pay for repairs up to an agreed-upon amount.
What are non-essential repairs?
As for what isn’t included, cosmetic issues such as peeling paint, worn carpets, and chipped tiles are not the responsibility of the seller. Other repairs that don’t make the cut include broken appliances, leaky faucets, and the like. This is because these issues do not impact the structure and safety of the home.
Again, it’s up to the seller to decide whether or not they want to address non-essential issues. Consult your real estate agent or property manager for advice on which repairs you should agree to complete and which ones you should forego.
What is a mandatory disclosure?
Rather than forcing the seller to repair the home, it’s more common for a state to order them to disclose the problems to potential buyers. That way, potential homebuyers will be aware of what they’re getting themselves into.
Who is responsible for paying for repairs after the inspection?
There is no hard and fast rule on who has to pay for repairs. As earlier mentioned, if the sale is on an “as-is” agreement, the buyer is responsible for the repairs. For sellers, they’ll have to consider whether or not conducting repairs is worth it. In most cases, sellers will decide to do the repairs to make sure that their potential buyers won’t walk away. This is especially true if they’re already having a hard time selling their homes.
If you don’t want to conduct repairs, you could compensate your buyer with a discount instead. That way, you won’t have to lower your price solely because you don’t want to spend money on repairs. Alternatively, you could offer to do only a few of the repairs, especially if you’re on a tight budget. Ultimately, when it comes to inspections, the goal is to come to a compromise.
Can the seller be responsible for repairs after the sale?
Sellers are not responsible for paying for repairs if they weren’t aware of the issues. However, they can be held responsible if they were aware of the problems, but they intentionally didn’t tell the buyer about them. As earlier mentioned, sellers can be mandated to disclose any defects of the home. Hence, if a buyer can prove that the seller deceived them, they can sue their seller in court.
What repairs do buyers usually request?
Homebuyers want to purchase properties that they can move into at the very moment they close the sale. Hence, it’s not uncommon for them to provide the owner with a very long list of repairs. These repairs are then handled by the owners themselves or by their property management companies.
#1 Broken Appliances
If you’re selling your property including its appliances, your potential buyer may ask you to repair or replace them, especially if they aren’t in good working order. Some examples include a broken refrigerator, a leaky dishwasher, and a damaged garbage disposal. Again, it’s up to you to decide whether or not to accept their requests. Keep in mind that repairing an appliance can cost anywhere between $105 to $240.
#2 Rotting Windows and Doors
Windows that have gaps around the edges can cause the cost of heating and cooling to rise significantly. No one wants to buy a home that will only raise their bills. If you don’t want to lose your buyers, you should consider resealing them. Be prepared to spend around $70 to $120 per window. If you’ve enlisted the services of a property management company, you’ll be able to complete these repairs at a cheaper rate.
#3 Paint Colors
This is the kind of repair that buyers shouldn’t bother asking for. Since paint is a cosmetic issue, it should be handled by the buyer once they’ve moved in. So, if your buyer asks you to change the paint color to something that they like, you don’t need to say yes. Cosmetic issues aren’t serious concerns. However, if you think that saying yes is the only way to secure a sale, then you should consider paying for it.
When it comes to selling a house, the key is to come to a compromise. You don’t always have to conduct repairs, but sometimes, it can help you close the deal. If you’re looking for a property manager to help you with your transaction, know that you can count on Luxury Property Care. Our property managers will help you sell your home while making sure that you don’t lose your profits in the process.