All experienced home buyers request a home inspection before signing the mortgage paperwork. Many do it because they’ve read that it is the right thing to do while others do it because they’ve been burned in a previous home purchase. Today I wanted to mention four key areas that often fall through the cracks when someone is preparing to sell a home. They are electrical, plumbing, roof, and ventilation; let me explain the reasons that these areas may fail inspection.
The age of the home and how recently the electrical system has been updated will play big parts in whether the electrical system is up to code. I will look specifically for:
- The electrical panel to ensure there is no obvious damage to it and that all grounding equipment is in place.
- Connected devices such as ceiling fans, light fixtures, switches, and receptacles inside and outside the home, and in the garage if applicable. I would, for example, recommend replacement of a wobbly ceiling fan or damaged switches.
- Polarity and grounding of accessible outlets.
- Proper placement and operation of GFCI (Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters) within six feet of interior plumbing fixtures and all accessible receptacles in the garage or on exterior walls.
- Observe placement of all smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors.
The home may receive marks against it if it has no GFCI outlets, or if it does not have the recommended number of smoke detectors or carbon monoxide detectors. The home’s electrical system, if damaged or not working properly can be a major deterrent for some home buyers.
Make sure that all plumbing is working properly before you put the for sale sign in the lawn. Consider having a professional plumber or home inspector check it out to make sure everything is working properly and there are no potential problems looming within the pipes or fixtures. You can hire a plumber to perform a video inspection or your drains to ensure that problems will be unlikely within 30 days of the sale. Repair any damaged plumbing before selling your home.
The roof can be a nightmare to repair if it is extensively damaged. Make sure there are no leaks and that all of the roofing material looks good before you put the home on the market. Call a professional roofing contractor to repair any problem areas including the gutters and downspouts.
This includes all exhaust fans and the heat pump (HVAC unit, air conditioning, and heating). The ventilation system is what controls the indoor air quality in the home. This system is critical to the sale of a home. No one wants to purchase a home with a faulty HVAC system… in Arizona.
Request written reports from anyone who works on the home while you’re preparing to sell; this can be used as leverage if potential buyers ask about the specific areas. You may also choose to supply your own home inspection report for potential buyers. I will fully inspect the home and provide my usual report. Call me at 480-570-5615 to schedule a home inspection in the Gilbert area.