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6 Easy Tips to Save Money on Your Home Inspection

Real Estate Agent with Front Gate Real Estate Broker 11085

As a Realtor, I've seen hundreds of buyers and sellers negotiate costly home inspection repairs. The home inspection can create undue stress and conflict for the parties involved. By taking a few simple steps BEFORE the inspection, some of the drama and cost of repairs can be avoided.


  1. Remove clutter beneath the kitchen and bathroom sinks. Home inspectors are not required or expected to move things around, and if they can't SEE what's beneath the sink, they can't INSPECT it. You may have to pay for a second inspection or worse, correct an obstructed leak at the last moment before closing. Besides, don't you think BUYERS look under the sink? Clear the obstacles to selling your home, and if you find a problem, repair it.
  2. Dirty Ceiling Fan BladeReplace the HVAC filter and remove dust from fans and vents. This is so easy, but you would be surprised how many homes I've shown that have a layer of dust on top of the ceiling fan blades. Yuck! If the fan blades are that filthy, how dirty do you think the HVAC ductwork is? Some buyers will walk away at this point unless there's a deep discount for dirt!
  3. Clear a path to the fuse box. If the inspector can't access the fuse box because of moving boxes or excess furniture, you'll likely be handing over funds for additional inspections or hiring an electrician to verify the homes' wiring is up to code. Remember, an inspector does not have to move boxes, furniture, or televisions to access the electrical panel. Make it easy for him to get to the fuse panel.
  4. The gas logs wouldn't light during the most recent home inspection. Why? Because the starter remote was in a drawer somewhere between the family room and kitchen. The report stated "the spark igniter did not function", which sounds a lot worse than the remote control was missing. If accessories are needed to light the pilot, or the gas is turned off, or a switch must be turned on, notify the home inspector of this in advance of his visit.
  5. Replace all the blown light bulbs throughout the house. You should have already replaced the bulbs when you put your home on the market, but it's especially important now, because the home inspector will say "a representative number of fixtures failed to work", and this could raise a red flag. The buyer or the inspector might suspect the FIXTURE is faulty, and not just a blown light bulb.
  6. Repair EVERY leak from the TOP of your house to the BOTTOM. Whether it's a leaky roof due to a loose shingle, a worn out rubber boot, or a 25c gasket, make the repair BEFORE putting your house on the market. Does your toilet leak or wobble? Replace the wax seal before a home inspector requires a "qualified plumber" to do it for you.


How do I know these points cause issues? I see these items written up on almost every inspection when the seller has not resolved the issues up front.


If your house is well maintained, the list of repairs will be MUCH smaller, repairs will cost less, and the buyer will have fewer issues once the home inspection is completed.


If you are in the market to sell your central Mississippi home, or if you are looking to buy a new home, contact me. Put my skills to work for you.


Chris Ann Cleland
Long and Foster Real Estate - Gainesville, VA
Associate Broker, Bristow, VA

Featured in the group:  BARTENDER, MAKE IT A DOUBLE.

Jan 03, 2018 06:08 PM
Golden1 Agents
San Mateo, CA

Thanks for sharing this.

Jan 04, 2018 03:11 AM
Pat Starnes-Front Gate Realty
Front Gate Real Estate - Brandon, MS
601-991-2900 Office; 601-278-4513 Cell

Anna Banana Kruchten CRS,CRB - I always encourage my sellers to repair these items before going to market. Sometimes they take my advice and other times they don't!

Chris Ann Cleland - Thanks for featuring this post in your group! I'm excited to be included.

Jan 04, 2018 12:14 PM
Sharon Tara
Sharon Tara Transformations - Portsmouth, NH
Retired New Hampshire Home Stager

Great money saving tips Pat! Most homeowners wouldn't know to do these things prior to a home inspection.

Jan 04, 2018 02:17 PM
Carol Williams
Although I'm retired, I love sharing my knowledge and learning from other real estate industry professionals. - Wenatchee, WA
Retired Agent / Broker / Prop. Mgr, Wenatchee, WA

Hi Pat,
Great tips.  I was always amazed at how many people didn't take the stuff off the floor that was covering the crawl space opening (in the closet).

Jan 04, 2018 04:12 PM
Debbie Reynolds, C21 Platinum Properties
Platinum Properties- (931)771-9070 - Clarksville, TN
The Dedicated Clarksville TN Realtor-(931)320-6730

There was a time that home inspectors in our area would carry some extra bulbs and a screwdriver to tighten up this or that. No more. The liability is too great and now they recommend a specialist to check it out.

Jan 04, 2018 07:54 PM
Pat Starnes-Front Gate Realty
Front Gate Real Estate - Brandon, MS
601-991-2900 Office; 601-278-4513 Cell

Debbie Reynolds - Couldn't they use a voltage meter or something similar to determine if the outlet worked? But I suppose you're right, there is a Standard Operating Practice they must all adhere to.

Jan 05, 2018 08:24 AM
Lawrence "Larry" & Sheila Agranoff. Cell: 631-805-4400
The Top Team @ Charles Rutenberg Realty 255 Executive Dr, Plainview NY 11803 - Plainview, NY
Long Island Condo and Home Specialists

Removing the clutter beneath the kitchen and bathroom sinks is a smart idea.  These are places that many store all kinds of clutter!

Jan 08, 2018 08:03 AM
Gabe Sanders
Real Estate of Florida specializing in Martin County Residential Homes, Condos and Land Sales - Stuart, FL
Stuart Florida Real Estate

These are great tips that can definitely result in a much smoother inspection for any seller.

Jan 10, 2018 05:21 AM
Francine Viola
Coldwell Banker Evergreen Olympic Realty, Olympia WA - Olympia, WA
REALTOR®, In Tune with your Real Estate Needs

These are so common and come up on all my inspection reports, too!  It's far cheaper for a homeowner who, for example, can easily fix a leaky faucet on their own than once under contract, have a buyer demand a licensed plumber make that repair.

Jan 13, 2018 09:56 AM
Betsy N. Robinson - Serving the Sandhills, NC
Everything Pines Partners, LLC. - Whispering Pines, NC

You point out several reasons why we always require a pre-listing inspection for any homes over a certain age, or one where the upkeep has been marginal.

Jan 14, 2018 04:13 AM
Rebecca Gaujot, Realtor®
Lewisburg, WV
Lewisburg WV, the go to agent for all real estate

Some inspections items would never show up on the report if home owners would check each room before the inspector shows up...of course, they shouldn't wait til the last minute :)


Jan 14, 2018 06:36 PM
Pat Starnes-Front Gate Realty
Front Gate Real Estate - Brandon, MS
601-991-2900 Office; 601-278-4513 Cell

Lawrence "Larry" & Sheila Agranoff. Cell: 631-805-4400 - that "clutter" easily hides water damage, too. It's better to remove all the bottles and cans to SEE what's going on under the sinks.

Francine Viola - Exactly! Home sellers can sometimes make these minor repairs quickly and easily.

Jan 14, 2018 07:53 PM
Pat Starnes-Front Gate Realty
Front Gate Real Estate - Brandon, MS
601-991-2900 Office; 601-278-4513 Cell

Betsy N. Robinson - Serving the Sandhills, NC - we don't see pre-listing inspections very often in my market, but suggesting it is excellent advice for sellers. 

Rebecca Gaujot - Last year I sold my personal home, and made most of the repairs prior to listing. That made the inspectors repair list much shorter!

Jan 14, 2018 07:55 PM
Sally K. & David L. Hanson
EXP Realty 414-525-0563 - Brookfield, WI
WI Real Estate Agents - Luxury - Divorce

A sharp listing agent has a wide eye for all things mechanical and cosmetic before the house is listed or inspected.

Jan 15, 2018 03:46 AM
Nick Vandekar, 610-203-4543
Realty ONE Group Advocates 484-237-2055 - Downingtown, PA
Selling the Main Line & Chester County

What an excellent post with great advice for all sellers to take to heart. Especially love the cleaning the fan blades.

Jan 15, 2018 06:24 AM
Gloria Todor
Premier Property Sales & Rentals - Springfield, PA
& Doug Durren (484) 431-3686 in SE PA

Pat this is a great post to help sellers make for a smoother situation with the buyer's home inspector.  Thank you!

Jan 16, 2018 12:08 PM
John Wiley
Fort Myers, FL
Lee County, FL, ECO Broker, GRI, SRES,GREEN,PSA

A good listing agent will have the seller prepared for all circumstances for the most favorable sale.

Your tips will help inspectors do a proper job and will reduce problems arising in the transaction.

Jan 16, 2018 12:12 PM
Debb Janes
Nature As Neighbors - Camas, WA
Put My Love of Nature At Work for You

Francine Viola nailed it. Many of the repairs can be done as DIY before a buyer demands a licensed this or that for repairs. ( naturally electrical and complex pluming jobs should be done by pros) We've also seen the heat blower unit on gas fireplaces packed with dust and dirt - that's also a big turnoff for buyers. 

Jan 18, 2018 06:53 AM
Foster Smith Summerville
Carolina One Real Estate - Summerville, SC
Summerville & Charleston Homes for Sale SC Realtor

Great advice and practical tips. 

Feb 02, 2018 04:12 AM