EDUCATION FOR SELLERS
Home inspections are very opinionated work. A buyer's inspector may have different, less or more experience then your inspector today and may call out issues that we did not. This does not mean your inspector missed anything and we are specifically disclaiming any other inspectors findings. They will in most cases be different, use different wording or could be more alarming to a buyer. We do our best to comply and stick to the Standards of Practice (SOP) of the State of North Caroline. We find the State's standards to be through and fair to both buyers, sellers, agents and the real estate market overall. This is for your information.
THINGS TO THINK ABOUT WHEN SELLING YOUR HOME
1. De-personalize. Depersonalizing your home by neutralizing and removing your personal tastes from your home decor, so that buyers can mentally see themselves moving in. This also makes rooms appear larger then they are.
2. Get super clean. Have the house including windows professionally cleaned. Especially windows.
3. If the house is to be vacant. Do Not let utility bills expire or let utilities be shut off. Keep the temperature in the house comfortable. We have seen buyers immediately walk away from houses that were great for them but were hot/cold and not comfortable to walk around in. This is not the time to save a little money on utilities.
4. Cage or better yet remove pets. Even if you are home. The liabilities for visitors and pets is just to high. Caged dogs that bark the whole time turn people away. We want buyers to stay and enjoy the home.
5. Don't be home during viewing appointments or home inspections. This makes everyone uncomfortable. Also talking to buyers/sellers reduces your negotiating position. Let your Realtor do your talking for you, that is why you hired them. Be polite but be quite and be away.
6. Disable or provide instructions for disabling/re-enabling all security systems, especially cameras and listening devices. If you do not trust me to look at your house and talk about it there is little reason for me to trust you. Remember buyers will be chaperoned by their agent.
7. HOME INSPECTIONS. Home inspectors want to write short reports houses with a lot a small issues cause buyers concerns that the house has not been cared for. A short clean report with one major fault I.E. bad roof covering is easier to deal with then a report that has 40 small items I.E. doors that do not latch when closed, sink stoppers that do not function. If the list is to long it gives the impression that you do not take care of the house, even though there are no serious items. Understand small issues are not the inspector be picky, most are required by State or other Agency SOPs (Standards of Practice) and the inspector must report on them.
8. Make sure all major equipment works. HVAC systems should be serviced within the last six months and the paper work laid out for all to see. This helps the inspector support you. Leave water heaters at the recommended setting, usually 120 degrees.
9. Electric circuit breakers and gas pilot lights. Inspectors will not turn on circuit breakers because they do not know the reason they are off. This is for safety. They will not light pilots to stove or gas logs or furnaces. Make sure all equipment is ready to turn on from the normal operating controls.
10. Windows and doors. Rarely do we find a house where they all work smoothly. Make sure doors latch/lock/do not drift and otherwise function as intended.
11. Walls and ceiling should be cleaned and if at all possible freshly painted. We realize painting is not always possible due to expense and time. However that water stain from the repair toilet leak is going to be a summary item. Water stains that are old and from repaired issues should be painted to avoid a write up. If not you will have to explain it later and later causes confidence issues with buyers and their realtors.
12. Kitchen appliance. Make sure they all work from the normal controls.
13. Baths, laundry and kitchens. Make sure all faucets work, do not leak. Hand sprayers work. Toilets work and are not loose from the floor or have loose tanks. Tubs/showers - fix any cracked caulk joints. Make sure fixtures are caulked at walls. Fill sinks and look under for leaks. Old stains on the bottoms of sink cabinets or stains on drain pipes - be ready to explain. They will be in the inspector's report.
14. Exterior. Curb appeal. Need I say more.
15. Vegetation. You may like it close to or growing onto your house, but no one else will. Inspectors know that vegetation damages the siding, leads to water penetration and is overall bad for the building. All vegetation should be cut back so an adult can walk between the house and the vegetation with their arm down. Basically go for 18 - 24 inches. Bottom rows of siding should not touch plants or earth, go for 6 inches here.
Certified Home Inspectors who serve the Triangle extending from Cary to Raleigh, Morrisville, Apex, Durham, Chapel Hill, Holly Springs, Fuquay-Varina, Garner, Clayton, Knrightdale, Wendell, Louisburg, Wake Forest, Franklinton, Carrboro, Creedmoor, Hillsborough, Rolesville, Youngsville, Zebulon, Smithfield, Sanford, Pittsboro, Siler City, Mebane, Burlington, and Archers Lodge.