Better to Ask for Money or Repairs During Home Inspections?

John Voirol Group
John Voirol Group
Published on January 22, 2019

I’m John with the John Voirol Group and today I want to tell you how to decide whether or not to ask the seller…if you’re the buyer…seller for money (i.e. a “credit”) so that you can fix something that you found during inspections after you move in, or if you should ask the seller to fix it themselves before you close on the transaction.

No time to read this article? Don’t worry, we made a video with all the same information and posted it for you below. Be sure to subscribe to the John Voirol Group YouTube Channel to be notified of our latest video tips! Alright, on with the content…let’s get into the much and the mire of home inspection negotiations.

So, for me the easiest way to make this decision during home inspection negotiations is to figure out whether or not I want control over the repair that’s going to be done. So, if I need more information before I can decide how the repair should be performed, or maybe if I want to choose the contractor or the finishes, then I’m going to ask instead for money from the seller that would go toward my closing costs and prepaid expenses at closing to cover that repair. That way after I move into the house I can have all of the conversations I need to have, get all the information I need to get and then perform the repair myself with the seller’s money. This is the way to go for some critical and common repairs needed during home inspection negotiations, but not always.

If you don’t care about the control of it and it’s part of a major system, it’s best to ask the seller to do it before closing. It’s also best to ask the seller to do it if it could lead to a more extensive repair. For example, sewer laterals often need to be repaired in St. Louis with all of our historic homes and cast iron pipes tend to be under many of the homes. Once you start messing with the cast iron pipe, it can break. So, what is a 2 foot repair could become an 8 or 10 foot repair depending on what happens after the contractor opens it up. So, if you get a credit for that during home inspection negotiations and move into the house and do it yourself, you could be biting off more than you planned on chewing on. So, it makes more sense to ask the seller to do that and then any liability related to the repair is absorbed by them instead of you.

So, I hope this clarifies and helps you understand whether or not to ask for money or a repair during home inspection negotiations. If you have any questions always feel free to comment on this video or emails us at [email protected]

This post was written by John Voirol, a top St. Louis Realtor and founder of the John Voirol Group real estate team. John has extensive experience supporting clients in the sale and purchase of historic homes in St. Louis, and because he was born and raised in St. Louis he especially enjoys helping clients discover which neighborhood best meets their lifestyle and housing needs. If you’d like to ask John a question please email him at [email protected].

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