Your buyer has included an inspection contingency; in today’s market, this is completely normal and to be expected. Though there are a few things you’ll want to keep in mind.  

Don’t sign any lease agreements or make any deposits on a new place until at least the inspection is signed off. Remember the inspection is a subjective process, meaning the buyers can change their mind for any reason, and potentially walk away, so now is not the time to make any new commital living arangement

There is no pass or fail inspection. The buyer’s inspector will simply make a list of problem items. It’s up to the buyer to decide which, or if any of those items are worth negotiating repairs and/or credits.

The buyer’s inspection is not the same as the bank’s inspection (appraisal). The buyer’s inspection will take hours (typically 3 to as long as 8 hours) and is very in-depth. The bank’s appraiser will be in your home for about 10 to 20 minutes and they usually only call very obvious items like:

  • wood rot or unsafe decks
  • bad roofs
  • missing CO detectors
  • absent earthquake straps on water heaters

A good agent is usually aware of what the appraiser will call, and will work proactively with you, the seller, in effort that those don’t come as a surprise.

[Click here to learn more about the appraisal process.]

It’s best if you and any other occupants of the home (including pets) are not home during the inspection. The buyer’s need this time to really look around and feel comfortable in this perspective home. It also allows the inspector to speak openly with the buyer about potential defects without influencing the seller in anyway. I’ve seen countless times where the inspector, in front of the home buyer, convinces the home seller of a problem. It is very difficult for me to negotiate strongly when the seller has already inadvertently nodded in agreement at the inspection.

All power and utilities should be on for the inspection.

Attic and crawlspace entrances need to be accessible. The power box (usually located in the garage) should be accessible as well.   Please move any personal belongings out of the way of these access points prior to the inspection.

The buyer’s agent will be present during the inspection. They will coordinate a time with the inspector, the home buyers and the buyer’s agent, and communicate that to me.

[Click here to see the Buyer’s Guide to Home Inspections.]