So, your house has been on the market for a while and you get a call from you agent! We have an offer (yea). The offer looks good and you accept it.
You will have a Home Inspection!
Let me help you prepare for it. The most important thing you can do is make sure the home inspector has access to everything. The attic, the crawl space, windows, doors, under the sinks. We want to operate everything, most importantly the mechanical systems – Electrical panel, furnace or boiler (or heat pump), water heater, the main water shut off valve. If we can’t get to it we can’t inspect it, if we can’t inspect it we will disclaim it. This could mean a return trip and you may get charged for it. Pretend like your going to be moving. If you don’t absolutely need it, pack it up.
Is there stuff in the oven? The sink? Blocking the electrical panel?
Take the liquor out of the trash compactor (yes really).
Clothes in the washer, dishes in the dishwasher. Put some soap in it and leave us a note to run it on normal (or whatever setting you want) but let us run it (we will anyhow). Your getting the idea; everything – everywhere! We don’t move your personal items!!! Is the attic access in a closet with lots of your best clothes under it? I carry a sheet to cover them; not all inspectors do.
Now that you have packed up all that which is not essential and you have a good view of your house. Do a visual look to see if anything is damaged.
Going under the house or in the attic can be dangerous. You may want have a professional do this.
DO NOT TAKE THE COVER OFF THE ELECTRICAL PANEL.
Here’s a short checklist: Any outlets or switches burned or cracked, missing covers? – Do all the doors and windows operate? – Does all the plumbing work, any leaks? – railings loose? – lights work? – Filters clean? – Do the gutters drain away from the house? – Is the A/C level?
Is something damaged? Have it fixed and save the receipts from your contractor. Maybe there isn’t any major issues, but lots of little items can add up to big problems. It’s easier to deal with issues before I show up and the buyer wants it fixed. Consider – you’ve lived there and you’re used to it. You may not even notice and likely don’t know its an issue. You may want to get a pre sales inspection and fix all the items prior to putting your home on the market. This is not uncommon.
!!Getting ready for the big day!!
Turn off your electronics/computers. While we don’t operate them, a breaker can accidentally get tripped when we take off the electrical panel cover.
Cars in the garage? Please park them outside. Got pets? This process freaks them out. Take them with you.
Leave fresh baked cookies on the counter (I like chocolate chip and snickerdoodles) Plan to leave prior to the start time. There are many inspectors who won’t proceed if you are there.