Inspection Trends and Market Conditions
This month I would like to discuss inspection trends and market conditions. Taking a big picture look at the inspection profession helps us be deliberate when adjusting to changes driven by the economy. I read an interesting article1 in The Washington Post recently (see link below) that discussed an increase of inspections. The article explained when the market turns from a seller’s advantage to a buyer’s advantage there is more opportunity to ask for contingencies in the contracts. This opportunity breeds a higher level of scrutiny available to the buyer.
In the heated markets throughout the country over the past few years, we observed a decrease in the percentage of homes being inspected; even though record numbers of houses sold. Buyers who were concerned about not getting the house they wanted, or who had lost out to other bidders in the past, were pressured to submit as clean an offer as possible. This would include minimal, to no, contingencies.
The market has now changed. There is much more “inventory” in most markets, an eight month supply in some areas. Buyers have the advantage and can include inspection and other contingencies in their offers. Obviously this is good for the home inspection profession. This is also good for buyers and the overall housing integrity across the nation.
When markets change like we are currently seeing many sellers see the need to make their property more attractive and stand out from the various other listings. One method is to have a “listing inspection.” Inspectors should be marketing listing inspections as one of their services. It just makes sense. Sellers can make their property more attractive to a buyer by providing the comfort of professional disclosure of the condition. Some inspectors offer a reduced fee “re-inspection” for the buyer, although others charge full-rate if the buyer wants an inspection specifically for them. This is truly a win-win for our profession, a listing inspection and even a reduced fee re-inspection still add up to more than one pre-listing inspection. Additionally, up-front disclosure will reduce or eliminate the “second negotiation” that typically occurs after the home inspection; buyers ask the seller for credit or repairs of certain items discovered. This haggling is usually negated by a listing inspection.
Now is the time to market your services with buyers in the driver’s seat. Kaplan Professional Schools – Kaplan Professional Schools can assist with all your needs. From Websites to Business Cards, we offer custom design to help you make your business unique. Visit www.inspectormarketing.com for more information.
talk next month,
Casey & Asha Alsobrooks
Kaplan Professional Schools
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