Building inspections and pest inspections are generally undertaken by the same company, sometimes by the same person. Though you need to ensure they are licensed for both activities. They are paid by the prospective buyer to look at the property and report on its condition, especially defects. As a seller, it is important to remember this. 

Inspectors are paid a fee to find out what is wrong with the property, not what is right. But in doing so, they more often than not neglect to put the condition into perspective and can needlessly frighten off the prospective buyer. The problem is that there is no objective measure as to what constitutes a defect. In their defence, building and pest inspectors are terrified of being sued for missing a defect and mostly try to cover themselves against any possible legal liabilities.

In practical terms, you can never tell how a buyer will react when they receive the report. Some will look at the list of defects and turn pale. Others will try to use it as a bargaining tool to reduce the price. And the remainder, especially in a competitive market, are sensible and experienced buyers. They are the ones that realise that unless the defects are serious (such as structural), they need to move forward quickly to avoid losing the property to another potential investor.

How people react to building and pest inspection reports come down to three things; the particular property’s demand, personality of the buyer paired with their desire to buy and the skills of the selling agent.

A good building and pest inspectors report will not only identify defects, but also provide a rectification method or advice on engaging with suitable consultants to investigate them further. A building and pest inspector has a duty to warn the consumer (prospective buyers) on all major and minor defects as well as any safety hazards.

It is important, as a home owner to remember that your property may have building defects that are not immediately obvious. But, if you know about them, you should always tell your real estate agent up front. There is no point withholding the information, because more than likely you will be found out.

 

It is a great deal better for your real estate agent to alert potential buyers of any problems or defects prior to the inspection, and preferably before price negotiations begin so they can be taken into account by the potential buyer.