Sellers: Hope for the Best, Prepare for the Unexpected
Sat, November 9, 2013

By Deborah Kearns, RE/MAX Senior Editor, Corporate Communications

We’ve been riding a wave of euphoria since our offer was accepted on our new house, which we close on in just a few weeks. But our euphoria came to a screeching halt when we learned that the inspection on our current home revealed a hail-damaged roof.

Unfortunately, the entire roof has to be replaced because it’s made of T-lock shingles, which are no longer used or manufactured. Plus, our sump pump apparently isn’t working and needs to be replaced.

Talk about some costly surprises.

After panicking for a day or two, we collected ourselves, got bids from roofers and contacted our insurance company. It turns out that insurance will cover the replacement costs due to the storms we had in Colorado not too long ago, so we’ll just have to cover our deductible. What a relief! As for the sump pump, nothing too scary there – it will only cost a few hundred bucks to fix, thankfully.

The good news for us is our inspector found just a few issues with our new house, and the seller has agreed to take care of everything we requested. That was music to our ears.

If you're selling a home, it comes down to this: You can hope for the best, but you should prepare for the unexpected, particularly where the home inspection is concerned. We made sure to have extra money set aside to help cover these rather inconvenient hiccups, and our agent was quick to provide us with names and numbers of trusted roofers and plumbers we could turn to for speedy and reliable service. The clock is, after all, always ticking down to closing day.

His guidance, combined with our responsiveness, have helped resolve the inspection issues in a way that makes everyone happy and gets us nearer to the closing table. In the end, that’s the goal.

My advice: Trust your agent’s expertise and your own instincts, and be flexible. You can’t always anticipate every twist and turn in the process. Oh, and keep a bottle of wine or your favorite adult beverage handy in case the stress gets to you. Or do what this pregnant mom does: Watch reruns of “Downton Abbey” while enjoying a pint of Häagen Dazs. (Hey, don’t judge!)

What do you think?

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