Q: The home inspection just completed on a home I have under contract turned up some issues. Should I insist the repairs be completed before closing?
A: It depends. Everyone wants a smooth closing and home inspection negotiations are definitely a place where a deal can fall apart. Here are some things you’ll want to consider:
1. If you require the seller to make the repairs, do you think they’ll do as good a job as you would? After all, they’re getting ready to move on to their next home. While the repairs must meet certain standards of quality, they might not measure up to your own high standards (though they technically fulfill their end of the bargain).
2. Ask yourself how much the repairs matter in the grand scheme of things. Are you quibbling over some peeling linoleum in a kitchen you’re already planning to renovate from the floor up?
3. The back-and-forth over repairs could delay your closing. Remember, actually getting the work done will involve selecting a contractor, scheduling the work, and final review of the work completed.
In lieu of having the repairs made before closing, you might decide to seek a cash-back credit at close of escrow. This way you can have the work done on your terms and your timeline after closing (and you might just offset some of those closing costs as well).
You deserve a home in satisfactory shape! How it gets that way is often negotiable.
Negotiating cash-back at close of escrow is just one of the many reasons working with a real estate professional is to your benefit. Don’t go it alone! I’m happy to help you get the most out of your next real estate experience: