To Repair or not to repair.. Home Inspections.   What is the solution?  Our Housing Market in The Woodlands Texas has never really entered into a true sellers market.  At the peak of our slowest sales period our average days on the market for our listings in our bread and butter price ranges of $250 to $750k were right at the 90-120 day range.  The last 10 months our sales have started to kick in and we are now seeing our averages under 30 days with most brackets..

With this lower inventory, and increased buyers, our sellers are seeing more and more multiple offers.  Once the contract is accepted, the expectations for repairs is viewed differently between buyers and sellers.  As a buyers agent, we are encouraging our buyers to bid slightly more than they were hoping to, increasing the estimated sales prices of homes in The Woodlands and our surrounding area.  Due to the increased offers, the buyers are expecting the homes to be totally ready for closing.   Then comes the inspections!!   Buyers should know that the sellers are in no way obligated to make any repairs found during the inspection process.   This has been another negotiating tool to help get additional cash out of the sellers to complete the repairs or to have the sellers complete the work prior to closing.   As listing agents, we should encourage the sellers to repair what is not working properly, as they are getting a better sales price for their home, and doing what is right, repair what is necessary.

Does this include items that recent code changes are now making what was once ok, now “dangerous” and a safety hazard?  I now encourage our buyers to adjust their expectations for inspection repairs and to only ask for what is broken, and not ask sellers for an upgrade to a non code issue at time of construction.  These items are personal in nature, and should be treated as personal not mandatory to the seller.  As a listing agent, I believe our sellers should only complete the repairs that are “broken” or “in need of repair”.  Asking for the personal upgrade only adds potential dissappointment in what is usually a great time in both sides of the transaction.  This helps creat the win-win for all parties.

As a Listing agent, I will now share with all buyers agents in the future, that they instruct their buyers, that my sellers will only respond to “not in working condition” or “in need of repair” items found on the report.  The inspectors opinions of what is necessary is also arbitrary, and should not be a contributing factor.

As a buyers agent, I will also work smarter to better prepare my buyers on the expectations of the inspection process.  As our inventory continues to shrink, homes becoming more and more scarce in the most desirable of places, my suggestion will be this… if you do not want the house, someone else is just around the corner, waiting on you to terminate and this home will be sold again in just a few days!!

As your Realtor in The Woodlands, I look forward to helping all of my clients with a fun, win-win transaction, one that at the closing table the sellers are glad to hand over the keys to a  new family excited about their new beginnings.

There are many homes for sale in The Woodlands, you just have to hurry, they are selling quickly!

Rick Raanes
Keller Williams The Woodlands
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To Repair or Not to Repair | Home Inspections