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2 years ago I could easily have answered that the buyer's home inspection is generally done within the 2nd day to the 14th day of when the purchase contract has been executed by both the buyer and seller. But in today's market 55% of the Santa Cruz County real estate transactions are Short-Sales. So I have a different answer.
This time period is sometimes called the Investigation Period. Unless otherwise noted in the contract the buyer has 17 days to remove investigation contingency, which allows the buyer and their home inspector the opportunity to carefully look over the home for any potential structural or mechanical defects.
Before that 17 day period has expired, if the buyer does not like the results they generally can exercise their right not to move forward with the purchase of the property
Short Sales are complicated transactions: When to do a home inspection for a short sale property depends on which side you are representing in the transaction. This topic can sometimes turn into a disagreement between the 2 agents.
Buyers do not want to spend money on home inspections when they do not know for sure whether their short sale offer is going to get approved or not. In CA short sale offers you usually receive an SSA Short Sale Addendum; the buyer's agent will ask to let the buyer do their inspection after the short sale approval letter comes from the lender. If I haven't had the opportunity to tell the buyer's agent ahead of time that I don't represent my Seller that way, I always counter this out.
As a Santa Cruz County short sale listing agent however, I need to protect my already Distressed Seller interests. Allowing a buyer to wait until after the lender's approval to do a home inspection would give the buyer the ability to "walk" too late in the Short Sale Transaction and that puts my client in peril. In a pre-foreclosure Short Sale the clock is always ticking and it doesn't turn backwards because the buyer walked. The seller would not have enough time to find another buyer. Trustee Sale will be performed on the court house steps while the buyer is writing another offer on some other house.
The majority of short sales are "as is" transactions. The reason the seller is doing a short sale to begin with is that they do not have enough money to continue paying the mortgage. Buyer's need to understand going in that the home inspection is not going to be an opportunity for them to present a Request for Repairs they want the seller to remedy. Come on buyers: This is a short sale were the bank and seller is already taking it in the shorts, your little list & what it cost is will not be taken care of the bank or the seller.
In conclusion, the buyer is not going to be able to negotiate any costs of repairs if the home inspection was completed after lender's approval. When the lender or lenders approves a short sale it is based on NET, a definite dollar amount they will be realizing at the closing and they do not allow for further negotiations.
Buyers: In a short sale if the home inspection is done up front you could possibly negotiate a credit prior to the offer being submitted to the lender.
For all these reasons it makes sense that the home inspection is done prior to short sale approval!
Need to do a Santa Cruz County short sale? Well . . . not every Realtor is qualified to represent a short sale!! You are going to need me
Disclaimer: ActiveRain Corp. does not necessarily endorse the real estate agents, loan officers and brokers listed on this site. These real estate profiles, blogs and blog entries are provided here as a courtesy to our visitors to help them make an informed decision when buying or selling a house. ActiveRain Corp. takes no responsibility for the content in these profiles, that are written by the members of this community.