Is The Seller Present During a Home Inspection
Is the seller present during a home inspection? There are some favorable and unfavorable thoughts about whether the seller should be present. During 2020 and 2021 it was very common for the seller to still be present in the home due to the pandemic limiting options for folks to go during the inspection.
Now that we have entered into post-pandemic actions we are seeing a mixture of sellers that decide to stay at the property. Let’s talk about to pros and cons of the seller being present during a home inspection from recent experiences:
Pros: Is the seller present during a home inspection?
- The seller is present to answer questions about the history of the property
- The seller is present to give access as needed
It has been nice to have the seller present when the home inspector needs to have personal belongings out of the way or give permission to cut the drywall around an electrical panel that has been painted over. The home inspector doesn’t want to have areas inaccessible so they can provide the most information about the property possible. Preparation for the home inspection is important and if done correctly then the seller would not need to be present to give access. Areas that are typically blocked are the electrical panels, water heaters, and attic accesses that are in the closet.
If an item is inaccessible and the home inspector has to reschedule the inspection then there will be additional fees which no one is ever pleased about but time is money right. The more prepared the property is prior to the inspection the better things should flow on the inspection day.
The seller’s agent will typically ensure that the seller declutters the home and ensures all areas are accessible prior to the inspection.
Cons: Is the seller present during a home inspection?
- The home buyer, home inspector, and buyers agent may feel awkward discussing the property with the seller in the area. We would usually go outside but it helps for the home inspector to be able to walk the potential buyer to a defect
- The seller interrupts the home inspector during the inspection. The typical question is, “how much longer is this going to take”. It’s your home inspector’s job to manage the inspection within the time allocated unless there are things that come up during the inspection that extends the time. The home inspector should politely work with the seller to communicate the inspection duration and any updates as needed.
- The seller can become too involved, sometimes following the home inspector and disturbing the inspector while conducting the inspection continuously. I blame them, they want to know what you are writing down about their property. In many cases, much of the information an inspector annotates is informational and may not be a defect for the seller to be concerned about.
Summary: Is the seller present during a home inspection?
As a home inspector, I prefer that the seller vacates the property during the home inspection. Home inspections are not an invasive process but because we are strangers in your home it’s not the most comfortable situation as you go through touching and talking about someone’s property that is near and dear to them. No one wants to offend the owner but homeowners can be protective of their space which is understandable.
To make the process as smooth as possible and give the buyers a comfortable environment to learn about the property, it is a best practice for the seller not to be present during the time of the home inspection but they have all rights to choose otherwise as they are the owners of the property.
Another article to check is “Who Pays for the Repairs?”. If you are researching properties and want to grab the history of the property, you want to visit the local building department or request a history report from https://www.buildfax.com/.
I hope this information has been helpful. If you have additional questions and want to get in contact with GGR Home Inspections please send us a note, text, or call.