Is An Inspection Before Listing Worth It?

December 1, 2023

Is An Inspection Before Listing Worth It?

Deciding whether to get a home inspection before listing your house can be a tricky decision. There are good reasons to do it, but also drawbacks to think about. Let's go over some of the key pros and cons so you can make an informed choice.


Pros of Pre-Listing Home Inspections

A pre-listing home inspection will help you understand the current condition of your home. The professional inspector checks major systems and components like the roof, plumbing, electrical, HVAC, and more.

Here are some of the reasons you might want to get a pre-listing home inspection:

  • Discover Issues Early
    Finding problems ahead of time allows you to make repairs before buyers start touring your home. This helps you save money while avoiding hiccups during the escrow process.
  • Make Repairs on Your Schedule
    Making fixes now rather than later gives you more control over the timeline. You aren't scrambling to make last-minute repairs and can shop around for the best deal.
  • Increase Home Value
    Some repairs can increase your home's value, allowing you to potentially list for more. Upgrades like a new roof often add value and are a desirable feature for buyers.
  • Speed Up the Sale
    Taking care of repairs upfront can help you close faster once you're under contract. If there are no repairs required during the escrow process, then you avoid unnecessary delays. 


Cons of Pre-Listing Home Inspections

While there are plenty of benefits to getting a pre-listing home inspection, it can also lead to some downsides. 

By law, if a homeowner or real estate agent is aware of any issues in a property then they must be either repaired or included on the disclosure documents. Pre-listing inspections could lead owners to discover issues that they would have otherwise been ignorant of and now need to include on their disclosures. 

The downsides of a pre-listing inspection include:  

  • Upfront Costs
    Sellers must pay for a pre-listing inspection report, adding an expense before listing your home.
  • Creating Extra Work
    You may end up fixing things that wouldn't have bothered potential buyers anyway. Not all repairs impact home value or saleability.
  • Disclosing Problems
    Known defects must be disclosed to buyers after an inspection. This could scare off interested buyers or give them leverage to negotiate.


Is an Inspection Worth It for You?

In general, a pre-listing inspection makes the most sense for older homes or those that haven't been updated recently. The likelihood of finding issues to address is greater, and these reports give sellers the flexibility to fix major issues within their own timeframe. Alternatively, they can choose to price their home competitively and market their home “as is.” 

An inspection is also smart if you anticipate multiple offers as it streamlines the sale process. Potential buyers are provided with the inspection upfront and are less likely to pull out of their contract. 

However, for newer homes in great condition, paying for an inspection may be unnecessary. If you're in a hot seller's market where homes go fast, doing repairs upfront provides fewer advantages.

Consider your individual home and market conditions when you decide whether or not your need a pre-listing home inspection. 

The experienced agents at The Yates Team can provide you with trusted guidance on a pre-listing home inspection before listing. With over 30 years of real estate experience in Boston, The Yates Team understands this market and stays up to date on best practices for buying and selling homes in the area.

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