Time for a Home Inspection? Now is When the Negotiation Really Begins

We’ve all heard the old cliché, “Buyer Beware.” There is no place that this rings more true than in real estate. Buyers are always looking for a great deal and sellers, understandably, want to sell their property at top dollar.

Finding a great deal is awesome, until you realize that oftentimes you get what you pay for. You may be able to haggle a great price on a home that is in serious need of a new roof, for example. Or, the seller knows that there is a very serious termite infestation and wants to get out leaving the unsuspecting buyer holding the bill for the exterminator.

Does this mean you should ignore “great deals” in the marketplace for fear you are walking into a money pit? Absolutely not! Instead, get serious about your home inspection.

First things first: Choose the right inspection company. Make sure your vendor is licensed and insured. Ask about whether they are knowledgeable about inspecting the both the house and the property. Not all inspectors are comfortable doing both and, legally, they don’t have to be. It’s your responsibility to ask the right questions. Get the name of an inspection company from someone you know and trust. You want to make sure you aren’t getting a “wham, bam, thank you mam” inspection.

Next, be aware that no house is perfect. Even brand new construction has its issues. With a resale, especially an old house or a fixer-upper, there are some specific issues to be on the alert for – and your inspector should be keeping an eye out for them. Since you will be on site as the inspection is happening, you can point things out they miss, if necessary. Remember, it’s your money; you have a right to ask questions and get information.

  1. Structure and foundation of the house – all houses settle but foundation cracks may be more headache than they are worth.
  2. Roof – age and condition
  3. HVAC system – condition, up-to-code
  4. Septic system and well
  5. Electrical system – including wiring and circuit breaker box
  6. Serious termite or other insect infestation
  7. Any problems with a pool, such as a torn liner

Those are the main undeniably expensive items on your “must-check” list when doing a home inspection. If your inspector finds a problem with any of these items, that doesn’t mean it’s a deal-breaker. It just means the negotiation work is getting started.

That’s where an experienced and skilled real estate attorney comes in. Joel R. Spivack Esq. prides himself on going the extra step for his real estate clients. Whether you are a buyer or seller, he will protect your rights and interests. He will handle all negotiations on your behalf with the other party and/or their real estate attorney. Mr. Spivack will make sure the process goes as smoothly as possible so you truly do get exactly what you are paying for – and not anything less.

We are here to help you.

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We are licensed to practice in New Jersey and Pennsylvania.

Attorney Joel R. Spivack is an experienced bankruptcy and residential real estate transactions lawyer in Cherry Hill, New Jersey. Clients come to us for legal services, but what we really provide is peace of mind. For more than 30 years, Attorney Spivack has helped people make wise, informed decisions about bankruptcy filings, debt relief options and residential real estate transactions.
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