With the real estate market being in a slump right now, buyers can take such advantage of their strong bargaining position! Trusting the broker can be the hardest part of buying a house. Being a prepared home shopper can be the best bargaining tool you have.
The most important thing you need to do as a buyer is hire a highly skilled inspector. Most homeowners in the state of Illinois require you to have an inspection within 10 days of signing the contract. This doesn’t give you a lot of time to find an inspector.
COMMON MISSTATEMENTS MADE BY REAL ESTATE BROKERS:
- “The mechanicals have all been recently replaced”,
- “This item was just repaired”,
- “The house is environmentally safe.”
PROTECT YOURSELF BY HIRING THE RIGHT INSPECTOR:
- Hire an inspector from another city: Inspectors’ biggest referral source is from brokers. You need a fair, impartial inspector.
- Hire a NACHI inspector: highest certification you can have as an inspector: 24 hours/year vs. IL law of 6 hours/year. 40% of all inspectors are certified by NACHI.
- Website for sellers to promote the “proper selling state” of their house: www.moveincertified.com. Website that posts if your house is in move-in condition—inspected by NACHI inspectors (highly skilled).
- Don’t worry if something has been replaced. But if it has been repaired, what problem is hiding underneath?
- Make sure your inspector is certified in environmental issues. Check with the EPA in your neighbourhood for any clean-up site nearby.
- Don’t count on inspectors to know LEGAL issues, like going over the property line, etc.
- Find out from the inspector what you can do to make your house more environmentally safe—better water quality, removing mold, becoming green-certified.
- Prepare to spend $400 for a complete, NACHI-certified inspector.
- Report bad inspectors to: State of Illinois Dept of Financial and Professional Regulation—they have the ability to pull the license of an incompetent home inspector.
- Most important thing you can do: look at overall cleanliness of house—good indicator that the house is well cared for.