Objective: What does an inspection do for you ?
Selling a home in the best condition possible assures the best price and a pre-sale inspection can be used as a guide to deciding what corrections to make in order to put your house forward in its best light.
Negotiating from a position of authority gives you a much better chance of getting your best price and knowing beforehand any items a buyer may try to raise to batter down your price lets you prepare your response. To be forewarned is to be prepared.
A pre-sale inspection can help you be sure there a no surprises waiting for you after the sale of your house. It help can abort many legal actions before they even get started saving hundred of dollars and in cases of dispute provide protections and proofs that could save thousands.
For example, lawsuits claiming hidden defects can often be stopped immediately simply by showing that the defect in question, as included in the pre-sale report, was visibly detectable and thus by definition not a hidden defect (article 1726). Furthermore the gallery of photos taken (300 to 500 per inspection) can be invaluable in the unfortunate case of litigation as they create an archive of your house and proof of its condition at the time of sale.
NB: It is important to know that as the seller you are liberated of all responsibility, for all time, for any defect, hidden or otherwise, known by the buyer at the time of the sale (Articles 1733). Your best protection is to know your house better than you thought you did and be open and honest in selling it.
What to expect the day of your inspection ?
An inspection takes from 2 to 4 hours at the property, depending on the size, the complexity, the condition and the age of the building being inspected. We do the inspection together (except for dangerous or really dirty bits!). Sometimes your real estate agent is also present and he can be a valuable source of information about right of ways, property lines, flood zones etc.
Typically we start by considering the surrounding environment and then we inspect the exterior of the building including the roof inspection which I usually do on my own. We then move inside and go from bottom to top; basement or crawl space, each room on each floor and finally the attic. We inspect all the components, and operate all the mechanical systems (see list in the side bar). As we move through the inspection I will explain everything I see and the impact I believe it will have on the home. At the end we will do a verbal summary of the observations.
The final report is usually about 20-30 pages long and includes an account of the observations made during the inspection, an identification of the defects found, an analysis of how they interact and what that tells us about the state of health of your home. Recommendations are given for each problem detected and items of particular importance are supported by photographs. A summary at the beginning gives you a quick reference to the major problems and recommendations found in the report.
The report is written individually for you and the house we inspected together; it is not the work of a software program. The diagnostic work done requires reflection, often research or sometimes calls to an associate or an expert. I take the time to do a complete second inspection of the house using the photos I have taken (300 to 500 per inspection).
You will receive your full report by e-mail a maximum of 3 days after the inspection. Paper copies are available for a fee.
What does it cost ?
The base honorarium of a pre-sale inspection is $500.00 dollars (no taxes are added to this price). The costs can increase depending on the size, complexity or age of the building, the presence of an apartment, garage or outbuilding or travel distances outside the region. Payment is made after the inspection by cheque, e-transfer or cash .
Contact me to establish a detailed submission and final price.
Reduction to young families: $20.00 per child less than 8 years of age.
The basic limitation on a pre-sale inspection is that we cannot do anything that damages, or might damage the property, the house, or its contents. That means our inspection (like that of prospective buyers or their inspector) uses only the evidence, the signs, we can see, smell, or hear to detect or deduce the state of affairs.
Our observations are limited to the date on which the inspection took place.
The inspection does not include any element that exposes me (or you) to any unnecessary danger or health risk.
A detailed explanation of the inclusions and limitations of this type of inspection can be found in the Norms of Practice at www.anieb.com and will be forwarded to you with your contract.
Example of PRE-SALE inspection points
We note the type of floor registers used allow for no adjustment of the air flow and that there no visible controls on the ducts in the basement. This situation makes the balancing of the heating system difficult and can result in uneven temperature distribution in the house. This problem easily and inexpensively corrected
We recommend installing adjustable registers and/or duct controls and re-balancing the heating system.
We observe that the last filter change indicated on the furnace is 3 years ago (2012). While the filters appear to be relatively clean and functional we remind that the appearance and record of good maintenance is important to buyers.
We recommend changing the filters and indicating dates of all maintenance on the stickers provided.
The propane tank is located on the left side of the house between three windows. The distance to these openings is insufficient and as such presents a risk that toxic gases could enter the house. We note that the installation of this reservoir may be the responsibility of the supplier.
We recommend verification of the safety of this installation by a qualified technician.
The plug beside the kitchen sink has no ground fault protection as is common for homes of this age. Such an installation is now considered to present a serious of risk of electric shock. This is a problem easily and inexpensively corrected.
We recommend installing a ground fault protection (GFI) on all plugs, as needed for safety.