I am purchasing a brick rancher house built in 1967 and had a home
inspection done yesterday. Some of the major items found were:
1) A crack in the exterior brick siding from the top corner of a window
towards the roof. The crack is rotational in nature and turns
counter-clockwise as it gets higher. The inspector crawled under the
house and inspected the support structure of the wall and stated it is
not related to the foundation but will need the attention of a brick
mason. There are also other minor cracks or in reality mortar
separations on a few other areas of the exterior walls.
2) Washer/dryer hookups are located in the attached garage. There is
no dryer duct to the outside and really no easy way to run one to an
outside wall considering the house has brick veneer. I am unsure
whether this is a major issue.
3) The house was originally built with an oil burning furnace and has
an underground tank. It now uses natural gas and the furnace/AC are
around 3 years old. The inspector suggests ensuring the underground
tank has been pumped dry.
4) The roof shingles are cracked, torn, improperly spaced, nail pops
and cut crookedly along the roof edges. The boots around the vents are
torn and/or dry-rotted. It is at least 15 years old. There are two
roof fans installed.
There are various other minor items found that I can deal with myself
and don't want to overwhelm the seller.
I am interested in suggestions on how to approach these issues and what
to look out for.
You (your agent, actually) will give the seller a list of the things you
want fixed before you buy the house. There's an implied threat that you
won't buy the house unless he fixes these items or gives you money off
the selling price to fix them yourself.
The seller will counter with an offer to fix some of the items, but not
You go back and forth on this list until the two of you come to an
Make sure your original list contains _all_ the items you really want
fixed. Pad it with some things you don't really care about. During the
back and forth, sacrifice the items you don't care about so you look
like a good guy. Realize that you might not get everything. Accepting
money is better than having the seller do the work, because you can get
it done the way you like.
A client in Highland Park (hoity-toity suburb of Dallas) gave me a long
list of things to do to get his house ready to sell--replace ceiling fan
with prettier one, fix fallen stone veneer, paint trim at roof, ...; it
was a long list. I replaced the fan because it was easy, then repaired
the fallen stone. I told him I'd be back to do the rest. He got an offer
the next day, and called to tell me to hurry and fix the rest,
especially the missing stone in the wall behind the bush. I told him to
wait and see what the buyer wanted fixed. Surprise: the buyer didn't
want anything fixed. Moral: What you consider a problem has no bearing
on what someone else considers a problem.
When you present the list of items, I'd make it clear that you prefer
to have the work done yourself after the closing and get a discount
off the selling price to cover the items. You could work with the
seller to choose a couple companies to give quotes. You are better
off this way rather than having the seller fix stuff, because for them
the obvious thing to do is get it fixed as basicly and cheaply as
possible. For example, if it turns out the roof needs to be
replaced, I'd rather have $$ for a basic roof and then make my own
choice as to whether I want a more expensive architectural shingle,
etc. Same thing with things like a dishwasher. If the dishwasher
has problems, I'd rather get a $250 credit and deal with it on my own,
instead of having the seller spend $250 fixing a 10 year old one or
putting in another low end one.
On Jun 20, 10:49�am, firstname.lastname@example.org wrote:
well the downside to that is the minor repair may uncover major
deficencies and costs, and your stuck.
so you get a discount for a new roof, wonderful:)
Then after closing find the roof sheathing is rotted, and so are some
your stuck paying all the extra costs
plus most new home owners are pretty broke, and lack cash for repairs
Whats the possibility that the underground tank is in tack and can be
used to make and store your own diesel fuel from french fry oil?
Just a thought.
If it is intact, at least find out the age of it for future reference and
regulations if it has to be tested after some period of time. IMO, it is
best gone away to eliminate problems.
If the roof sheathing and joists are rotted, there is a good chance
that it will be spotted by a proper home inspection. And if it's
not, there's nothing to say that having the seller put on new shingles
will uncover those problems. The seller could simply have a roofing
company put the new shingles on top of the old, instead of removing
them. In most places you can put a second layer on. Not how I
would do it if it was the house I was going to live in, but most
sellers would do it that way to save cost.
Given the choice, I'd still take the credit for the std roofing job,
then have it done my way when I'm ready. If it were some major
problem, like foundation work, which is harder to evaluate going in,
then I would agree you might be better off having the seller do it.
Clearly there is a range of choices and you have to consider the
A solution to that is to ask for the seller to credit the repair costs
against their closing costs.
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