As with any business and or industry, one has to roll with the punches and adapt in order to stay at the top of your game.
The Real Estate industry is no different. Providing a professional service to buyers and sellers means that you have to do everything in your power to make sure you act in the best interest of your client. You also have to make sure that you cannot be held responsible for defects that wasn’t declared by the seller. One way of doing this is by having a professional property inspection done prior to the listing or selling of a property.
This is much easier said than done as many sellers already want too much for their properties, having an inspection done will, in many cases, mean that the seller will now have to spend more money on fixing the problems or he will have to drop his price to compensate for the problems. The cost of the inspection will also be for the sellers account unless otherwise agreed to by the buyer.
The positive side to all of this is transparency. Buyers will know what condition the property is in and they won’t have to worry that the seller or agent is hiding something. The inspection will also cover the seller and the agent and will assist in the valuation process, making sure that the property is marketed and sold at the right price. All (or most) agencies and agents do little defect lists on their mandates and offers and sometimes these are even completed on behalf of the seller just because the agent didn’t see anything wrong with the property.
Whether a buyer can legally take you to court or not is not the point, providing a professional service is …….. in most offers I have ready through, buyers acknowledge that they have thoroughly inspected the property and that they buy it as they have seen and inspected it …… I have never had a buyer climb in a roof …… neither have I as I wouldn’t know what to look for any way!
My personal opinion is that a pre-listing property inspection will become mandatory in our industry and being pro-active in this field will be to any agencies’ advantage. Sellers need to take responsibility for the condition of the property and disclose as much of the condition of the property as possible. Agents need to take ownership of their stock and make sure they know what they are selling ……… Reputation can make or break any agent.