We recently discussed the listing agent's responsibility to "inspect" a property....the due diligence of identifying obvious property conditions. There IS more to taking a listing than signing paperwork, putting a sign in the yard and a description on MLS. See this post regarding the ethical standard of disclosure...regardless of whether or not it is a Buyers or Sellers market...the gold of disclosure does not change....here is that post. Conditions no matter how extreme do not change standards.
Let's look at the OTHER side of the transaction...what Duties does a Selling agent have when they are showing a home OR attending an inspection ? To use the KISS principal...Leave the property in exactly the same condition as you found it. That means that the Selling agent has a duty to "supervise" the Buyers...AND their families. The children who dive into the toy box, play on swingset....toss the stuffed animals in the air...need to be reminded of the manners and behavior required in touring another person's home. It is a HANDS OFF visit respecting another person's property no matter how tempting it is to try out new toys. Selling agents cannot be afraid of offending parents/buyers...let them know Ms/Mr Selling Agent that you are responsible for the leaving the home in the condition you found it.
Adults are not "exempt" from taking the examination/inspection farther than it belongs. Carpeting is attached to the floor for a reason. If you want to know what is underneath it...hardwood ...OR? ....the Selling agent can inquire...without lifting a corner of the carpet that remains detached and the property not in the same condition.
A basement inspection does not allow you to peek behind the paneling and remove or"adjust" a board to see what is lies underneath. Once again...agents can confer to learn what lies behind that wooden fascade...not the province of a Buyer OR inspector.
Follow the Golden Rules or Inspect and Respect and every agent will be well within the ethics guidelines the real estate industry has established.
This has been a dutiful reminder post brought to you by Sally K. & David L. Hanson, Broker Associates with EXP Realty, LLC honored to be of service for all things real estate in southeastern Wisconsin.