The Chapel Hill & Triangle real estate market is thriving, with no slowing down in sight. While this is wonderful news, it is evident that the market is highly in favor of the seller. So, what does this mean for all potential buyers? In order for the offers to even be contemplated, many buyers are finding themselves waiving certain contingencies to make it more appealing for the seller. While there are a few contingencies that could be reasonable to waive, think twice about waiving a home inspection! This is a contingency that many stress over but it is crucial for any buyer to continue on with a thorough inspection of the home before they close.
What exactly is a home inspection contingency?
When writing up your offer, your realtor will always ask you if you would like them to include an inspection contingency. Once you say yes, they simply check a box saying that you have the legal right to have the home professionally inspected before fully going through with the sale of the home. It’s crucial that you entrust this duty to a professional who isn’t affiliated with the seller. Once the inspection is completed, the buyer has the option to continue in the following ways:
- Go about the sale as originally planned
- Ask the seller to replace or fix issues found by the inspector
- Renegotiate the price of the home so it reflects any extra costs you’ll be putting into repairs
- Decide to back out of the sale of the home altogether (Keep in mind that an unsatisfactory inspection is one of the only ways to back out of an accepted offer without penalty to you.)
What are the risks of forgoing an inspection?
There are many risks that you take when choosing to forgo an inspection contingency. For starters, you are essentially buying a home blind. Sure, you might love the layout and features that the home has to offer but is there radon, hidden mold or a crack in the foundation? As a buyer, you won’t know if these common and costly issues exist without a professional inspection.
Other common issues typically only found during an inspection:
- Electrical Issues
- Water Damage
- Roof Damage
- Safety Code Violations
- Rotting Wood
- Faulty Plumbing
- Foundation Flaws
- Potential for Basement Flooding
- Inadequate Insulation
- Heating/Cooling Defects
Aside from the costly repairs that can only be discovered with an inspection, there are also safety issues to consider. Not only are findings of radon, mold, and carbon monoxide going to cost a decent amount of money to fix but they are also safety concerns that need to be addressed. Before you submit your offer, make sure to have your realtor include a clause saying you have the right to cancel your offer if such issues are found and the seller refuses to have them fixed. This is another reason why inspections are crucial because many hazardous findings are only able to be discovered with the use of professional tools.
Other Reasons to Get the Inspection
The list goes on and on regarding why an inspection is necessary. Here are a few more:
- Negotiating tools – findings from the home inspection will be a pivotal tool for you, the seller, to negotiate the final cost of the home. Once you know what needs fixing, you can prioritize what you want the seller to cover and what you’re willing to fix yourself.
- Discovering code violations – Inspections are able to report whether or not any addition or remodeling project on a home was done properly up to code or with a permit. This is important information because once you own the home, it becomes your problem. It no longer matters if you violated the code or if it was the previous owner.
- Insurance purposes – There are many reasons as to why an insurance company will refuse to insure a home. Reasons such as not obtaining the correct permits or there is adequate flood damage, etc.
- It will help you to plan for the future – The big picture is this. Once you go through with your inspection and decide to continue with the purchase of the home, you’ll now have a better idea of how to plan for the future. Which projects will take precedence? Which will you have to save for? At the very least, it provides buyers with the luxury of being able to plan ahead.
It’s important to remember that inspections can be somewhat pricey. On average, a highly regarded inspector could charge you anywhere from $400 – $500. However, it is an investment that’s worth every penny. When searching for a new home and preparing to put in your offer, remember to fight the temptation of forgoing your inspection contingency! Once it is off the table, the seller has everything to gain and the buyer, everything to lose.
Everyone’s safety is our first priority. We are providing services electronically – VIRTUAL listing appointments, buyer consultations, virtual showings, & paperwork completed electronically! We are taking steps every day to raise the level of everyone’s safety and health and are preparing our seller’s homes with a more “touch-free ” experience and buyer tours with CDC recommended protections.
We will get through this! While we are experiencing some uncertainty, we do know that people will have homes they need to sell and homes that people will need to buy. You will be able to buy and sell Real Estate safely & comfortably wherever it is that you may be.
Our team is here to help you, in any way we can, Real Estate or otherwise.
Call or text us today at ️(919)-414-0337 or 877-478 4669 if you are out of state, for more information.