How To Negotiate With A Seller After A Home Inspection

A home inspection is a vital part of the home buying process. This can help you uncover potential issues with the property and help you renegotiate a better deal.

Although the seller doesn’t have to lower the price or perform these repairs, acknowledging that repairs are necessary can open new negotiations.

But it’s safe to say that not every seller is willing to renegotiate the terms of the deal after a home inspection. When that’s the case, it’s important to know how to approach the issue. And that’s what we’ll talk about in this article.

Make It Clear

This very first step can go one of two ways. It will successfully convince the seller to change the terms of the deal, or it will put the deal off for good. When looking at the first outcome, there are several things to discuss.

A home inspection gives you plenty of options. The most common is to ask the seller to make the repairs. While in most cases, the seller won’t bother doing that. So that gives you another option, which is to ask for credit toward your closing costs. This will lower your closing costs, but you will have to make the necessary repairs yourself.

A more popular option is to ask the seller to reduce the price of the house to make up for the cost of the repairs. In many cases, this is the most likely approach that the seller will accept. But that doesn’t mean it will work 100% of the time. One thing it will do is fail if you approach it the wrong way. So here is how to approach it the right way.

Be Polite

The reason why you’re going with a home inspector is to uncover deficiencies in a home. This saves you time, energy, money, and a lot of headaches. But it creates an additional problem. While you will be aware of all the problems the house has, it creates a need for how to solve them.

You will have to discuss this with the seller. Unless you’re okay with the deficiencies, you will need to approach the request for repairs by being polite. While most of you will be offended by the fact that the seller failed to mention the leaky roof, going on the attack is a mistake to avoid.

According to Porch.com, a home inspection saves buyers $14,000 on averages when renegotiating. That is a lot of money, and you need to make it work in your favor. Outright demanding that they cover the costs might work in some cases, but they might come as a surprise to the seller as well. In many cases, the seller doesn’t even know these problems exist.

So by being polite and discussing the matter in a civilized way, you are more likely to reach a conclusion that benefits everyone.

Discuss the Options

As mentioned previously, a few options exist when negotiating after a home inspection. This decision mostly falls on your shoulders. Are you willing to take credit or are you willing to let the seller do the repairs?

Most sellers won’t bother making the repairs as they will be asked to perform them in time and up to standards. If you aren’t an expert fixer, then you will likely hire a third-party contractor to fix the repairs. So sellers are more willing to offer credit (repair money) instead of making the repairs themselves. But what do buyers prefer?

Buyers are also advised to take credit. Buyers cannot be 100% certain that the seller will complete the repairs. Keeping that in mind, there is also the subject of doing the repairs in time. Also, buyers might have a different idea as to how to make the repairs. So by asking for the seller to make the repairs, everyone is losing.

Ask For A Quote

A home inspection report doesn’t cost anything compared to what you’re getting in return. According to the US Department of Housing and Urban Development, home inspections generally cost between $300 and $500.

In return, buyers know exactly in what state the house is. They know if the roof is leaky or if there are any plumbing issues, among other things. But a home inspector can also give you a rough estimate as to how much the repairs will cost. With that said, you should always consult with an expert such as a general contractor regarding this issue.

A home inspector might offer advice, but they’re not tasked with making the repairs. Thus, asking for a quote from a general contractor will tell you exactly how much money you can ask the seller to credit to you.