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From an Inspectors Perspective: FSBO’s Suck

Perspective of: Juan Jimenez

I think I get stuck with every FSBO inspection in Richmond, VA. Sometimes, I will have multiple inspections a week for FSBO’s.  Generally, if the home is FSBO, the buyer also has no representation.  From my inspector perspective, both parties are lost in the sauce and it sucks. It’s always a nightmare and I am considering charging more for home inspections on FSBO’s.When I inspect for a buyer who is purchasing a FSBO, the buyer always at least a million questions that I don’t have an answer to. They ask basic questions like “will the seller fix this?” or “its listed ‘as is’, does that mean we can’t ask for repairs?” Although I have heard realtors answer these questions for their clients countless times, I don’t feel comfortable answering them myself. I am not a realtor.  Then, there are the endless phone calls that ensue. The buyer has no idea how to handle the inspection response.
Somehow, I become the man expected to have answers except I don’t have any answers!The sellers aren’t any better.  They call me asking why the buyer hasn’t sent them the report, or what I find during my inspecton.  My client paid for the report and its up to them to share with the seller what is in the report.  Sometimes they want to know why the buyer backed out. I have no idea. I don’t even know why they are asking me.  I don’t understand why they aren’t communicating each other. How did I become the middle man? I once even had a seller threaten me with his lawyer. The poor sap didn’t know that he and his lawyer had no standing to force me to do anything.
It is always a mess! A lot of them simply fall apart.  Real estate agents are there for a reason.  They have the training, and experience to answer your questions, market your home, and communicate through hurdles. They know what to do before, during, and after the inspection. If they don’t have an answer, they have a full army of support behind them.  There is absolutely zero logic in not getting representation when buying a home, and faulty logic when you are trying to sell your own home.
From my standpoint as an inspector: Leave it to the professionals!

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