Seller’s Disclosure and Your Wellbeing
A seller and their agent have a responsibility to disclose any condition they are aware of that affects your health and safety and upon specific inquiry by the buyer. Often times the seller or their agent may have limited or no knowledge at all about a defect that affects health or safety. These are very important reasons why you should chose a conscientious inspector that provides additional detail about present or possible defects. Some buyers and/or their agents are concerned that an overzealous inspector’s report will cause unneeded concern over a seemingly insignificant issue. Remember, an inspection report is an opinion according to State and Industry mandated standards and opinions differ between persons. Better to be safe than sorry down the road.
Energy Efficiency, Building Air Quality and Environmentally Friendly Home Construction
Many builders are incorporating newer technologies such as building air exchange systems, high efficiency HVAC systems and appliances and beginning to use terms such as a “Green Home”. When a sales person or marketing literature advertises such features it is recommended that the buyer inquire with the builder or salesperson if a third-party has verified the rating or if a certain system has been tested to make sure it has been installed correctly. Don’t hesitate to ask your agent questions during the property viewings so they have ample time to inquire with the seller’s agent, builder or developer. While an experienced home inspector will be able to identify some energy efficient features such as sufficiency of attic insulation, ventilation systems and vapor barriers a home inspection is not intended nor are the standards designed to evaluate energy efficiency ratings or green certifications. The only time a buyer has any bargaining power is before the purchase is consummated which means asks during the property viewing in writing and follow-up with a telephone call. Many contracts contain a provision for 10 days to have a property inspection performed. Signing the purchase contract begins the race towards contract closing where the buyer’s and seller’s agents, mortgage lender, appraiser and inspector are all working in a race towards closing so they can move on to their next job. Don’t delay with your questions or concerns!