Realtors, imagine selling a house faster, with fewer headaches, AND protecting yourself from future lawsuits. This is all possible.
Previously, all it took to sell a house was to put up some photos and place a for sale sign, and you’d have multiple offers within days, if not hours. Whereas with the changing market, houses are no longer selling right away. Subsequently, buyers have options and the worst thing is to get a house under contract only to have escrow fall apart. Lastly, a nightmare for Realtors is getting sued after the transaction. The vast majority of real-estate-related lawsuits come down to the lack of disclosure. Yet there is a simple way to solve all of these problems when selling a house. But before we get into the benefits, let’s look at what the California Association of Realtors says about representing sellers.
RPI Form 130
In their textbook for the broker’s license, the California Association of Realtors textbook states
Sellers and their listing agents are encouraged by legislative policy to obtain and rely on the content of a Home Inspection Report to prepare their TDS for delivery to prospective buyers.
Listing agents are strongly encouraged to use the form (Calif. Bus & P C §8516) — RPI Form 130 – Authorization to Inspect and Prepare a Home Inspection Report. Accordingly, representing a seller without a home inspection in place is going against the advice of C.A.R.
Control The Price
A challenge for realtors taking a listing is, they really don’t know what they are representing. What is going on in the attic? What is going on in the crawlspace? How is the roof? How old is the HVAC? As a listing agent, you do not have a full idea of what you are representing. Further, you are dealing with a seller who wants top dollar for their property, while dealing with a changing market. A pre-listing home inspection allows a listing agent to fully understand what they are representing, and they have an objective report to show their seller to base a realistic price. Following a home inspection, a listing agent has the information to sell the house quickly by pricing it right.
Take The Upper Hand In Negotiations
Whoever gets the inspection first has the upper hand in negotiations. Savvy buyer’s agents know every item on an inspection report is a negotiating tool, and really savvy agents will push on how difficult it will be re-list the house if escrow falls apart over inspection issues. Hence, getting the inspection done first gives the listing agent the upper hand. Issues can be disclosed upfront and prevent a buyer’s agent from taking control of the negotiations.
Save Time = Saving Money
A problem listing agents can have is getting a house under contract, only to have the escrow fall apart. Once in escrow, the buyers have multiple outs. The biggest out for a buyer is their inspection contingency. A buyer can cancel escrow at any point during their inspection contingency, for any reason, and simply say they didn’t like the inspection report as an excuse. Many times the buyer simply gets cold feet, or gets overwhelmed, and uses the inspection as their excuse to get out of the contract. While other times, the buyer actually finds something that makes the buyer want to change their mind.
By having a home inspection done in advance, the seller can disclose everything upfront. There are no more “October Surprises” that come up with the buyer’s inspection that can cause delays or cancelation. More importantly, a nervous buyer can’t simply say they didn’t like the report when they had a copy in advance. Further, by making the escrow process smoother, deals can close faster. As the saying goes, time is money, and no one wants to waste time with a difficult escrow. Hence, a home inspection allows an agent to sell a house faster.
Completely Control The Sale
Accordingly, by controlling the price, taking control of the negotiations, and saving yourself time, a listing agent can once again control the sale, even in a buyer’s market. The days of controlling the sale by simply representing a house everyone wanted are over for the time being. Despite the changing market, listing agents can retake control by having a pre-listing inspection.
Save Yourself From Lack of Disclosure Lawsuits
In speaking with multiple Real Estate Attorneys, the leading cause for a Realtor to get sued is over lack of disclosure about a property. Earlier we brought up how a listing agent can not fully understand the house they are representing, and can not possibly disclose everything there is to disclose. However, listing agents can protect themselves from such lawsuits by always presenting a pre-listing inspection to the buyer. Though the home inspection report does not absolve an agent from filling out their AVID form, it does provide reasonable care that the agent did everything they could to disclose relevant information about a property by providing an objective report.
To book your pre-listing inspection, call 818-298-3405 or book online here.