Inspection Defects - Now What?

Typically, your professional inspection will occur after you have a fully-signed sales agreement and escrow has been opened. If the inspection reveals significant defects (a leaky roof, broken heater/air conditioner, etc.), the wording of the agreement should allow you to either withdraw from the sale without penalty or to reopen negotiations. Have your attorney check to see that the proper conditions are detailed correctly. 

If a defect is found, normally you may:

• Back out of the deal;
• Demand that the seller fix the problem; or 
• Demand that the seller compensate you by lowering the price.

If the seller agrees to fix the defect, you would be wise to insist on a professional job. Many times sellers will attempt fixing plumbing, electrical, structural, or other work themselves and create more problems.

If you agree to accept monetary compensation, be sure it's enough to allow you to fix the problem after the sale has been completed. Get several estimates of the repair costs before deciding on a price.

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