Required Pre-Sale Inspections - South San Francisco

Real Estate Agent with BRE # 01442690, Scott Keys Properties BRE# 01442690

Required Pre-Sale Inspections - South San Francisco

Just about every city in the San Francisco Bay area requires some sort of city mandated inspection or report prior to the sale of a 1 to 4 unit building.

South San Francisco requires a Home Safety Inspection by the Fire Prevention Division prior to closing a sale. They do offer a pre-inspection at no cost. This would identify things like smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, water heater strapping, safety issues with exits or security bars, and work done without permits. I spoke with a very nice and well-informed woman at the Division yesterday regarding an upcoming REO listing.

Required Pre-Sale InspectionsIn response to the initial pre-inspection, seller could do one of two things:

1. Have any noted items corrected. Then schedule a final inspection (cost is $125) at which time the Division will sign off on the corrections and issue a Certificate of Compliance.

2. With the pre-inspection items identified, market the property AS-IS with the understanding that it will be the buyer 's responsibility to correct the items after close of escrow. Once a buyer is on board a separate addendum would be required showing that the buyer agrees to remedy any code related issues within a certain time frame after close of escrow. This is then registered with the Fire Prevention Department. There is no pre-sale Certification of Compliance, but no Violations recorded either.

Approach 1 is obviously preferred, and where it concerns mostly missing detectors or water heater bracing, should be the approach taken.

Approach 2 would solve the problem in the case of a Short Sale (seller has no funds), seller has died, or in the case of an REO property. This would most likely come in to play in remedying non-permitted work, or illegal construction.

Posted by


John M Scott, Broker / Owner, Scott Keys Properties, Certified Distressed Property Expert (CDPE), Council of Real Estate Brokerage Managers (CRB), serving San Francisco and the surrounding San Francisco Bay Area

Comments (2)

Laura Allen, Lake Tahoe - Truckee Real Estate for Sale
Coldwell Banker, Tahoe City, CA (530) 414-1260 - Tahoe City, CA
Tahoe Real Estate Agent Helping Buyers and Sellers

Good post.  Local REALTOR insight and knowledge is so valuable for both buyers and sellers.  Thanks for sharing yours!

Oct 15, 2011 11:27 AM
John M. Scott
BRE # 01442690, Scott Keys Properties - San Francisco, CA
Broker / Owner San Francisco Bay Area

Laura, what impressed me the most was the Fire Prevention Division. You call them and they actually pick up the phone and talk to you. And they know what they're talking about. Incredible!

Oct 15, 2011 11:38 AM