These days, when I put a buyer under contract with a home, I can almost write up verbatim what the inspection report will say. It seems that there are just a few items that always show up on an inspection report. Here is a partial list of what I see day after day and report after report.
1) Furnace and air conditioning coil needs to be serviced, cleaned and certified. I think every inspector puts this down. Sellers, take note, have your furnace and air conditioning coil cleaned, serviced, and certified before putting the home on the market. It only costs about $300 and it will save you from scaring away the buyer.
2) Roof. It seems that every roof shows some wear and tear. I see inspectors always put the following comments, “Roof is showing some wear and tear. Shingles need replacing and drip edge-flashing needs to be added. Recommend that a licensed roof contractor evaluate.” They always add the last part as their disclaimer. Inspectors are quick to point out that they are not a professional___________ and you should get an evaluation from a professional__________. This is to cover them from future litigation. Again, note to sellers that it would be a good idea to have your roof looked at for maintenance issues before you put the house on the market.
3) Radon: This is always on top of every buyer’s home inspection list. Sellers should know ahead of time if they have a radon mitigation system. If not, you should have the house tested. Buyers from out of state that are not familiar with Colorado’s radon problems get easily freaked out about a high radon test. This is easily fixable and should only cost from $800-$1000 for a full radon mitigation system.
4) Small stuff. Check appliances that are not working properly like the back burner of the stove that stopped working three years ago. Outlets that should be GFI protected and are not. Loose wiring, past leaks, doors and windows that don’t open and close properly, smoke detectors that are not working or present, carbon monoxide detectors not present, garage door springs that no longer holds up the door, etc., etc.
Finally, I tell all buyers that whatever comes out in the inspection, don’t freak out. I have never done an inspection and have the house come out clean as a whistle. The inspectors will always find something and 98% of the time, everything they find can be fixed. Even in rare situations when structural problems are discovered, don’t worry! Even structural problems can be fixed and the house can be made to last a long, long time.