Recently a buyer balked when writing an offer on a home because they didn’t think it was fair for them to spend $400 on a home inspection especially if they were to decide to opt out when it became obvious that there would be too many issues to overcome in negotiations. They felt the seller should shoulder the burden of that cost if they backed out of the deal. Their rationale was that disclosure of those defective items would somehow be a benefit to the seller. In this scenario, I carefully explained to the buyer that they must be willing to take some risk in the offering process, since the seller was also taking a risk on them. They walked away without presenting their offer because they didn’t have the stomach for any risk. They also don’t have the blessing of owning that home!
One thing I’ve learned in the last six decades is that every blessing comes with a responsibility. Home ownership is a big responsibility! What I find interesting is that many buyers search and search without finding what they want simply because of their attitude. They expect a new house for a used price. Once a home inspection is performed and they see the list of deferred maintenance items, they panic and bail instead of assuming the responsibility for a used product.
Using a car purchase as an analogy; if you looked at a car that had no brakes or windshield, it would seem reasonable that the dealer should repair those items before you drove it off the lot, but if the upholstery was a bit tattered and the tires only had ½ tread, it may seem unreasonable to ask for new upholstery and new tires at the used price.
In a recent case, an inspector insisted that the hot water tank was “beyond its usable life” and must be replaced, even though it was still working and probably would be for many years hence. In another case the inspector mentioned that the roof only had 5-7 years of life left and so the buyer asked for a brand new 30 year roof. In another case the inspector noted that the wiring did not meet current code, so the buyer asked for upgrades even though the wiring met current code at the time it was built. Expecting no risk is unreasonable! Assuming risk or responsibility brings blessings!