Should You Get a Pre-Listing Home Inspection?

Leah Lopez Cardenas
Updated January 3, 2022
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You may want to consider getting a pre-listing inspection to get the most out of selling your home

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A pre-listing home inspection uncovers potential surprises that could derail the sale of your house. If you're ready to sell your home and want to ensure the sale process will go smoothly and quickly, you may want to consider a pre-listing home inspection.

What Is a Pre-Listing Inspection?

A pre-listing inspection, which is paid for by the home seller or listing agent, provides a written report on the condition of the property. It could uncover any concerns that might compromise a sale. It is very similar to a home inspection at any other stage of the home selling and buying process, it just happens prior to putting your house on the market.

What’s the Difference Between a Home Inspection vs. Pre-Listing Inspection?

Typically, home inspections are paid for by the buyer and performed right before closing the sale of the home. By moving the inspection to the beginning of the sales cycle, sellers are able to shorten the process by removing obstacles before they can interfere with a potential sale. A pre-listing home inspection covers the same things as any other home inspection, including taking a look at the foundation and structural integrity of the house, roofing, siding, electrical, plumbing, heating and cooling systems, and more.

Benefits of a Pre-Listing Inspection

Chic living room with fireplace
Iriana Shiyan - stock.adobe.com

Pre-listing inspections may eventually become the more common home inspection, but the importance of having a home inspection as part of the home sales process cannot be understated. It protects all parties involved by providing invaluable information so that educated decisions can be made.

The Sellers Have Options

Sellers can choose who they want to perform the inspection and assist in providing details of equipment maintenance, supply dates of improvements, and explanations for current conditions.

Accurate Pricing

A pre-listing home inspection helps the agent set the seller's price expectation and can be used to substantiate a higher asking price. There will be less room for the buyer to negotiate a lower price than the seller is asking for if both parties are already aware of any issues that were found during the pre-listing inspection.

Full Disclosure

Buyers’ benefits include receiving a third-party review of the home’s condition before making an offer which can assist in procuring financing. Agents will have fewer issues to negotiate at the last minute, and buyers may even waive their inspection.

Flexibility

Sellers gain more time to make repairs, compare bids from local contractors on work to be done, and can truly provide full disclosure to their potential buyers.

Stress Relief

The inspection can remove any doubt the buyer might have regarding any initial concerns and may also reduce the stress associated with purchasing a home.

Disadvantages of a Pre-Listing Home Inspection

Cost to the Seller

Usually a home inspection is covered by the buyer so they can ensure they’re not taking on any unexpected issues after buying the home. This also helps them negotiate for a fair price based on the home inspection findings. With a pre-listing inspection, the seller has to pay.

Disclosure of Issues With the Home

Full disclosure is often an advantage in most situations, but it can also be a disadvantage for homes with a lot of problems that need repairing. Many state laws require a seller to disclose any known issues with the home to the buyer before closing.

Pre-Listing Home Inspection Cost

Recent data finds that the cost of a pre-listing home inspection is $350 on average, but can increase by several hundred dollars if you have a large home. Most professional home inspectors charge a fixed price up to 2,000 square feet and then charge $25 more for every additional 500 square feet.

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