Throughout the years of working with clients during home inspections we have recognized consistent issues with winter home inspections that can be prevented with proactive steps by sellers. As you may know, items such as swimming pools, cooling systems and lawn irrigation systems can not be fully inspected in the colder months. Joe DeLaurentis give us tips on how to manage these items now for a seamless transaction later.
Cooling systems (AC) are included in our CT Regulations for Home Inspection with direction to observe and inspect the systems. However, in the winter months, the systems can not be operated to prevent damage to the outdoor condenser unit. At Tiger, we use a guideline of 55 degrees F the night before the inspection and 65 degrees F at the time of the inspection as a minimum for testing. When these temperature conditions are not met, we are still able to visibly inspection the equipment, condensate drainage, and attempt to date the system but we cannot operate the system. Many clients are not satisfied without knowing that the system operates. One easy way to combat the situation is to have the cooling system serviced in the early fall months and provide these documents to prospective buyers.
Knowledge of the pools condition is important to property buyers, but swimming pools are beyond the scope of a home inspection by CT Regulations. Understandably, buyers are curious about the condition of liner or gunite finish as well as piping, pump and heater systems. Even if your seller client has always conducted their own pool maintenance, encourage them to have the pool closed by a reputable pool company that will provide an inspection report on the conditions. Prospective buyers will appreciate this information.
Another seasonal item that can be a concern to buyers is underground lawn irrigation systems, and these are also beyond the scope of a home inspection in CT. These systems may be just a nice addition to a home for some, but for others, it is very important. The later acknowledge the high potential repair costs. Be sure that the system is properly winterized by a reputable company that can provide documents describing the condition of the system at the time of service.
For all these seasonal items, a prepared seller and listing agent with documentation from industry professionals stating the system conditions are sure to impress others in the transaction. By easing buyer concern, you can have a much smoother road to closing.
And, remember, at Tiger Group, we provide one return inspection visit at no-charge for exterior items (roof, walkways, etc.) that are snow covered in the winter.
We find sellers are becoming more proactive every day; many see great value in taking advantage of these tips as well as our Seller Preparation Inspection. This is just one more option for seller preparedness. If you have questions on this or any other Tiger service, please contact us.