The Selling Home Inspection Checklist: What Every Seller Should Know

by | Feb 13, 2023 | Selling Advice

Selling a home is like crossing an obstacle course – there are so many steps to take and things to consider that it can be hard to keep track of. One important checklist item for sellers not to forget is the home inspection, which serves as both a safety net and an opportunity.

The Selling Home Inspection Checklist helps ensure that all bases are covered when preparing your house for sale. 

Why you should inspect your home before selling

A thorough inspection of your property helps potential buyers understand its condition and feel confident about their purchase.

By checking off items on the home inspection checklist – such as checking faucet handles; testing appliances; ensuring plumbing works properly; evaluating the roof’s condition, etc.–you’ll be able to identify any problems ahead of time so they don’t become dealbreakers down the road.

Additionally, inspecting your home before selling gives you an opportunity to fix issues or disclose them upfront in order to prevent delays or costly complications during negotiations with prospective purchasers.

In short, investing some effort now will save you trouble later – not only making sure everything is up-to-code but also allowing both parties involved in the sale process peace of mind when signing documents at closing.

home owner inspecting a home with a pen and clipboard

Clean and declutter any open spaces

When selling a home, it’s important to make sure that any open spaces are clean and decluttered. This process can help potential buyers envision the space as their own while also making an overall positive impression of the property.

To ensure this goes smoothly, let’s review a few items that should be taken care of in order to present your home in its best light.

First off, all surfaces should be wiped down with a damp cloth or disinfectant spray. Any dust buildup or dirt on windowsills and countertops should be cleared away so that these areas appear spotless when buyers come for tours.

Additionally, furniture should be arranged neatly and any personal items such as photographs or memorabilia should either be removed from view or put into storage containers.

Finally, if you have extra knickknacks lying around like books and magazines, these too can benefit from being tidied up before showings start.

Inspect your kitchen

It’s time to take a closer look at your kitchen. What will you find when you open the door? Will it be gleaming and welcoming, or could there be lurking problems that could cost potential buyers in the future? It is important for any seller to inspect their kitchen before putting their home on the market.

The first step of inspecting your kitchen is examining all appliances. Are they working correctly with no visible signs of wear and tear? Take time to check if all knobs and buttons are operating properly.

Make sure that all cords are firmly plugged into outlets and not frayed or worn out. While these minor details may seem insignificant, small issues like these can be very off-putting to prospective buyers.

Don’t forget about aesthetics!

Is cupboard space maximized by organizing items neatly inside? Do countertops have an organized layout without too many items cluttering them up?

These visual cues can easily influence how buyers perceive your home; so make sure everything looks neat, tidy, and well-kept.

A plumber inspecting the pipes of a faucet under a kitchen sink

Inspect your bathrooms

When inspecting your bathrooms, it’s important to check for any signs of water damage or mold. Look in corners and around the edges of the room for any discoloration in tiles or grout that could be indicative of moisture problems.

Make sure all fixtures are functioning properly and look out for anything leaking from faucets, toilets, showers, etc.

Check windowsills to make sure they open properly and aren’t blocked by paint or other materials. Inspect fans to ensure they’re working correctly and draw air outside instead of into an attic space.

Lastly, observe if there are sufficient lights and switches installed throughout each bathroom according to local electrical codes.

Inspect your attic

Inspecting the attic is an important step in a home inspection. It can often reveal potential issues that might be invisible to the naked eye, such as insulation problems or water damage.

Before you begin your inspection, it’s vital to take safety into consideration; make sure all ladders and access points are firmly secured.

Start by checking for any physical signs of wear and tear, including structural damage caused by pests or weather. Among these, look out for areas where the roof sheathing may have been compromised due to rotting wood, sagging rafters, or improperly sealed joints between materials.

If anything looks strange, don’t hesitate to hire an expert for further evaluation.

Also, check the insulation levels in different parts of the attic—you’ll want to ensure they meet local building codes and energy efficiency standards. Pay attention to any air vents and assess whether they’re properly installed with no gaps around them; this will help reduce condensation buildup in wet climates.

Inspect your basement/crawl space

Inspecting your basement is another important part of the home inspection process. Basements may contain a variety of potential issues, so it’s critical to give this area careful consideration when you’re selling your home.

Start by taking note of any visible signs of damage or evidence of moisture that could indicate larger problems beneath the surface.

Check for cracks in walls and floors as well as any areas where water might be seeping through from outside. Be sure to look around windowsills and door frames too; these are common places moisture can enter the basement space.

Don’t forget to inspect all electrical outlets and appliances in the room to make sure they are up to code.

Finally, pay attention to ventilation levels in order to ensure adequate air circulation throughout the space. Poor ventilation could lead to mold growth or other unwanted consequences down the line if left unaddressed. 

Test the functionality of your utilities and other mechanical items

It pays to have a thorough understanding of your utility systems when prepping for sale. Check out that water heater and make sure those pipes are running smoothly (no leaks or low water pressure, please!).

Test all appliances for power and functionality. Open up your electrical panel and ensure each switch is working properly. Don’t forget about smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors; if they need replacing do so before putting the house on the market.

Inspect any additional heating/cooling system components such as ducts or vents to verify that everything looks good from top to bottom. 

Exterior visual inspection of your property

Walking the property, and analyzing and assessing the exterior of your home is vital in a selling home inspection. Before potential buyers arrive to inspect, it is highly recommended to walk the property with an experienced eye.

The outside spaces should be inspected carefully for any signs of wear or damage that may need repairs before listing your house with a real estate agent.

Checking walls and roofs for leaks, holes, cracks, peeling paint or other deterioration is key in this process.

Inspecting windowsills and window frames must also be done; these are subject to weathering over time as well as insects such as termites. It is important to ensure proper functioning so that they can be sealed properly during winter months.

While surveying outdoors, check pathways and walkways for any tripping hazards or uneven surfaces. This includes making sure stairs meet safety standards with handrails firmly attached and ensuring any driveways do not have large ruts or potholes.

Also, assess landscaping features like trees for dead branches which could potentially fall on someone below if left unchecked – especially when being exposed to strong winds from storms!

Lastly, examine outdoor lighting fixtures; old or broken lamps could turn off potential buyers.

Make repairs to necessary items around the property

It’s time to take a closer look and ensure everything is in working condition before putting it up for sale. Making repairs to necessary items around the property will help make sure any potential buyers don’t have an excuse to turn away.

Starting with outside features such as gutters, doors, windows, and siding, inspecting each one for damage or deterioration is key. The roof should be checked too – if there are missing shingles or other signs of wear, they must be replaced before prospective buyers come knocking.

Look out for loose boards on the deck and stairs; any found should be tightened immediately.

Weeds can become a problem quickly so spend some time maintaining landscaping tasks like weeding gardens and trimming hedges. Ensure fences are secure and check that outdoor lighting works properly – no buyer likes walking into darkness!

Minor issues that may need fixing may also include painting window frames or shutters, replacing outdated door handles, or cleaning windows inside and out – all little details which add up to create an attractive home.

If you have any major repairs needed, we recommend contacting a local handyman to get the average cost of repairs before getting them fixed.

Final Thoughts

Our home selling inspection checklist is an important step in getting your property ready for the market. This list of items should be completed before listing so that you can make sure everything is up-to-date and functioning correctly.

Having a well-maintained home can help to increase its value and attract more offers from interested buyers. Paying attention to small details such as making minor repairs or ensuring all appliances are working properly may seem like a lot of work upfront, but it could pay off in the long run by helping you to move out quickly and get top dollar for your property.

If you’re considering selling your home for cash and need a fast and reliable solution, HomeBeacon can help. Our team of experts will work with you every step of the way to ensure a smooth and stress-free process. Contact us today to find out how we can make your home-selling experience a positive one.

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