Are you preparing to sell your home? One of the things that will happen in that process is a home inspection. That occurs before any sale becomes final and is paid for by the buyer.

If there are any issues with the home discovered at that point, there is generally discussion between the buyer and seller about who will pay to fix problems. There are often times that the problems discovered are insurmountable and end up killing the sale.

So, as a seller, what can you do to avoid these surprises?

The answer is simple, according to our real-estate expert Realtor Terry Lehman.

“The best way to avoid any issues you don’t want to deal with at the sale is to have a walk-through, pre-listing inspection,” Lehman said. “This may seem redundant, but having an inspection done before you are dealing with any potential buyers has a great upside. You eliminate being blindsided by an unexpected problem that could make all the difference during the sale, because you already know the exact condition of your home.”

So, what steps should you take prior to the walk-through, pre-listing inspection.

First, prepare a list of all the things you already know about the house. If you’ve had repairs done in the past or put off repairs on something that you know needs to be fixed, they should all go on the list. You may want to get some of those repairs that you have put off done at this time. Second, said Lehman, is to make sure you have a reputable and responsible home inspector.

“Obviously, you should share the list with the inspector before the any inspection is done,” he said. “You want your inspector to know all this in advance, so he or she can review those issues. If you identify the things you already know, the inspector will find if there are any other issues.”

While the seller is paying for this walk-through, pre-listing inspection, there are a few things to consider. First, it typically cost half as much as a full inspection with a formal report.

But more important than that, this walk-through, pre-listing inspection provides the opportunity to prepare for your sale while saving some money. It will still give you a blueprint of how to move forward.

With the information from this inspection, you can determine what you want to fix before you put the home up for sale and which items you want to disclose for the seller to repair. Of course, this information is invaluable in setting the asking price for the home.

“You are setting your own schedule on when major repairs need to be done,” said Lehman. “Waiting for the buyer’s inspection will give you a limited amount of time before closing to accomplish the repairs. Your Realtor will be able to advise you on which home repairs yield the best turnaround and highest selling price.”

So, while there may be some cost related to having this walk-through, pre-listing inspection, it is one of the most important things you can do to prepare for selling your home. And when you compare it to the price of the sale, it makes great sense.

Next time, Mr. Rick’s Blog will focus on asbestos in your home and what you need to do about it.