Good advice on inspections... Sellers should probably vacate while it's being done but to we do need to look to the contracts we use to ensure that all parties are treated fairly and in the context of the contract.
Now, before you get all toasty on Rich, remember, the title of the post says "can,” not "should." I do believe a seller should leave the premise when a home inspection is being conducted. There have been periodic posts about this subject from time to time with a lot of great comments. One home inspector even said he asks the sellers to leave, if they hadn't already done so. As a listing agent, I'm not sure I would agree with that approach, since the home inspector generally doesn't know what was agreed to in the contract of sale.
Some of the comments I’ve read go so far as to say the seller has no "right" to be at a home inspection. Personally, I think that's taking it a bit too far. Rights are generally defined by law, or contract. While I do recognize the passion in these types of comments, I’ll stick with the contract to see what “rights” are granted.
In Maryland, the home inspection addendum actually gives the seller the “right” to remain in the home during the home inspection. Here's a direct quote, "buyer and seller shall have the right to be present during the inspection(s), and buyer shall give seller reasonable advance notice of the date and time of the inspection(s)."
There's no ambiguity there as far as whether the seller has a right to remain in the property during a home inspection…at least in Maryland. For many reasons, I don't believe they should be in the home, and I always encourage the sellers in my listings to leave.
That being said though, if you’re not sure what "rights" convey to a party in a real estate transaction, read the contract.
Richard Iarossi, REALTOR®
Long and Foster® Real Estate, Inc.
Crofton, MD 21114
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