Step 4 to Selling Your Home: Conduct a Pre-listing Inspection

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Step 4 to Selling Your Northern Virginia Home - Conduct a Pre-Listing Inspection

Proactive versus Reactive


Should you do a pre-listing inspection?

We are huge advocates of pre-listing home inspections. That means you have your home inspected by a certified home inspector before it goes on the market.

A pre-listing inspection will allow you to see things that need to be repaired before listing, and sometimes buyers will waive the inspection if you can share an inspection report.

Having a pre-listing inspection means having a licensed home inspector comes in, and systematically looks at every detail of the home, outlining things that need repairs.


Most homes that fall out of escrow do so because of problems found in the home inspection. Rectifying any issues before coming on the market may solve this problem before it arises.

There are both pros and cons to this approach and you should weigh them both before making a decision. Pros of having a pre-listing inspection


Benefits of a pre-listing inspection

  • You have the opportunity to address major issues that may scare off buyers during their inspection

Picture this. You receive and accept an offer on your home only during the home inspection the buyers are told there’s an issue with XYZ. Most closings occur within 30 days of accepting an offer. During peak season it can be next to impossible to get major repairs done on such short notice. In this case, the buyer may request a credit based upon the expected cost of repair.

Quite frankly, most buyers will request a credit based upon the highest estimate they receive which is almost always more than what your trusted handyman or repairman would charge you.

  • You and your agent can more accurately price the house based upon its condition

Good news!

The real benefit of hiring a professional Realtor® is having the guidance necessary to market and sell your house for the best price in as little time as possible. Pricing correctly is what separates the best real estate agents from the rest.

Your agent will be able to take any repairs into account when comparing your home to those that have recently sold.

  • We’ll be able to market any improvements

Some of the repairs may be considered updates or upgrades that your agent can use to market your home.

That means advertising repairs made after the pre-listing inspection along with any other improvements made to your home over the last few years.

  • Fewer items to negotiation when the buyers have their inspection

By addressing major concerns upfront that leaves less room for buyers to nitpick. You can even share your inspection report with the buyers identifying what repairs you have already completed.

While this isn’t a guarantee the buyer won’t have their own list of repair request it make keep negotiations to a minimum.

cons of pre-listing inspection

Cons of a pre-listing inspection

  • The cost of the inspection

Home inspections aren’t free wheater done before listing or by the buyers after an accepted offer. This step can cost you anywhere from $300-600 which may or may not be within your budget. If it is within your budget this step can save you more than its cost in the long run.

  • You may be required to disclose findings

Disclosure laws vary by state, and depending on your location you may be legally required to disclose issues uncovered during the inspection to any buyer.

If you’re able to make all recommended repairs you may not be required to disclose them.

But if you cannot make the repairs, the defects you find through the pre-listing inspection could make it challenging  to sell your home.

  • The buyer may still request lengthy repairs

After addressing all major issues identifying on your pre-listing inspection the buyers may still have a hefty list of repair request. Some buyers look at a home inspection report as a to-do list while others are only concerned with major issues.

We like to tell our clients there will be elephants and mice on the report. Elephants are major concerns and safety issues and mice are things to keep an eye on for future repair but items that don’t present a problem at the moment.

Focus on the elephants.

Nevertheless, there are buyers then will want to address both the elephants and the mice.

If this is a step you want to proceed with, we can arrange an inspection with a trusted inspector, and even be present for the inspection so you don’t need to miss work or reschedule any activities.

Do you have a property in Northern Virginia you would like to sell?

We can help sell your NOVA Property! Call 703-539-2053 to discuss your home’s value or receive your free home value report done by an experienced Northern Virginia Realtor®. We are here to help you with all of your Northern Virginia real estate needs.

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Are you ready to start the home selling process?

Send us an email to [email protected] or call (703)539-2053

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Step 1: Hire a Realtor

Step 2: You’ve Hired Your Realtor. What’s next?

Step 3: Declutter and Stage!

Step 4: Conduct a Pre-Listing Inspection

Step 5: Repairs

Step 6: Deep Clean

Step 7: Professional Photography

Step 8: We’ll Pre-Market Your Home

Step 9: We’re live on MLS, now what?

Step 10: Putting your home listing on 3rd party sites (Zillow,, Trulia, etc.)

Step 11: Time for Showings

Step 12: Week One on the Market

Step 13: You’ve got your first offer!

Step 14: We couldn’t come to agreeable terms with the buyer. What now?

Step 15: Offer was accepted! Congrats!

Step 16: The Home Inspection Period

Step 17: Financing and Appraisal Contingency Period

Step 18: Select a Title Company

Step 19: Scheduling closing date

Step 20: Hire Movers, Start packing!

Step 21: Utilities Transfer

Step 22: Home Owner’s Insurance Cancellation

Step 23: Hire a Cleaning Service

Step 24: Buyer’s Mortgage Approval

Step 25: Final Walkthrough

Step 26: It’s Closing Time!

Step 27: Review Us

Abraham Walker, Your Realtor

About the Author: The above article was written by Abraham Walker, Your Alexandria Virginia Real Estate Agent, helping clients market their homes to achieve high sales with a quick closing time is my main priority.

He’s the co-founder of Ask A Walker and can be found on YouTube, Facebook, and HERE on this blog.

Abraham can be reached via email at [email protected] or by phone at (703)539-2053.

He’s happy to answer all your real estate questions.

Thinking of selling your home? Check out my 20+ step process to selling your home. Or contact me now to start the home selling process. Same day appointments are available on a case by case basis.

Your Alexandria, VA Realtor, Abraham Walker, helps people sell and buy real estate in the following Northern Virginia area cities & neighborhoods: Kingstowne, Island Creek, Cameron Station, Overlook, Alexandria, Old Town, Belle Haven, Fort Hunt, Mount Vernon, Springfield, West Springfield, Burke, Lorton, Woodbridge, Lake Ridge, Manassas, Annandale, Fairfax, Arlington, McLean, Reston, Herndon and of course Vienna.