How to Keep a Home Inspection From Killing a Deal• Much of keeping the deal together is about controlling emotions.• There are many things that attack a buyers emotions during a home inspection such as: safety items (will my children be hurt), cost to maintain (are there too many expensive items to fix), is this a money pit (am I being suckered), is the home eaten up with termites, are there are asbestos fibers in the air, will my children get brain damage from lead poisoning, is there hidden mold that will make us all sick. Will I get lung cancer from radon. Will the sewer back up the first night I’m there. Will the roof leak and drip on me while I’m sleeping. The seller insulted me and I’ll not buying this home to get back at them.• They begin to think that a cure to these emotions is to find a different home to buy or, rent at $750 a month for another five years.
Celebrate• Keep the process positive. Buying a home is a great decision. It’s hard to make a bad decision when buying a home. Even if a home needs maintenance it’s better than renting for another five years (at $750 a month that’s $45K).• They’ll spend their life in this home and share holidays, graduations, births and all of lifes events. It’s a great thing they are doing, financially and personally … don’t loose sight of that over a paint job or GFCIs that need to be installed or even a $5k item.
Prepare Your Buyers For The Inspection:– Explain to them that is about the major items per the State of XX regulations.– There are no perfect homes and some things will be discovered that might be concerning, that will be the case with all homes that you purchase.– Some seller’s can be contrary and insulting, be prepared for that and don’t take it personally. If you do, your emotions might cause you to make a bad decision.
Select the Right Inspector/Company• If you select the “Poindexter” inspector for the fast moving, fast talking client, the client will be overwhelmed by the long detailed inspection process/report and will lose interest.• If you couple the fast moving, fast talking inspector with the “Poindexter” client, the client wont respect the “not detailed enough” inspection.• The home inspectors experience and training matters when it comes to selecting the correct inspector. It does not matter what’s on their resume or shirt, what matters is their knowledge, personality and communication ability.• A company with poor client service is an irritation which raises emotions complicating the entire process.• Information in the report must be accurate.
Encourage Clients to Attend the Inspection• Just reading an inspection report can be alarming. Have your clients at the inspection to meet the inspector and hear and see the deficiencies; they’ll understand the magnitude of the items lowering emotions.
Knowledge is Key• An inspector has the job of helping his clients understand the magnitude of a deficiency. It’s not an inspectors job to scare the clients back into an apartment.• When emotions get high, educate about the subject. People immediately assume the worst case “that the house will burn at night killing my entire family”. “The roof will collapse three hours after closing”. Help them understand that it’s the not case through education about the subject. Education will remove the fear.
Dealing With The Report• Remind them that the building inspection is about attaining knowledge of the home and identifying significant deficiencies• Remind them that every home has defects or areas of needed improvement.• Remember, sellers will most always fix things that don’t work, i.e. a defective dishwasher, a furnace that wont work, a leaking roof, a toilet that leaks or wont flush. These are easy negotiations. Try to avoid negotiations about things that are not black and white or, are working but might fail in the future.• Take the report and use a yellow marker to highlight things that are concerning. Then go through the report again with a red marker and red line things that are concerning and important. Then go through again and circle the things that are really important and that you want the seller to fix. This process will boil only the important items to the top making the process manageable.
Involve the Inspector• A good home inspector is a walking bank of accurate knowledge. Use them to talk to your clients if clients get cold feet.• A good inspector will be able to keep things in perspective and if he’s done his job right they’ll have confidence in his opinion.• A good inspector will help your clients deal with the emotion and based on accurate non-emotional decisions help them decide if this is the right home for them.• A good inspector will assure them that he is there to help with good advice in the future. They are not alone in the process.
If the Deal Can’t be Kept Together• Respect their decision, maintain the relationship with them and set out to find that right house.