When you’re selling a home in St. Thomas, home inspections are critical as most properties here are subject to additional wear and tear due to environmental factors. While some of the familiar flaws may not seem like much to you, they can turn out to be deal breakers for potential Buyers.
If you’re planning to put your home on the market, getting a professional home inspection is a great way to show Buyers that what they’re getting is a quality home.
Here are some costly mistakes to avoid and other things to keep in mind during a home inspection:
Ignoring environmental damage
Most properties in the Virgin Islands are subject to the effects of extended periods of sunlight, which can lead to premature aging of external finishes. Salty sea air and sand particles from the beach can cause paintwork to chip and scratch and result in rusting metalwork as well as damage to certain mechanisms like door hinges and window latches.
A professional inspector will help you identify any environmental damage present, allowing you to perform the necessary repairs and renovations prior to listing your home.
Failing to perform proper maintenance on waterfront homes
In order to avoid costly repairs, it’s always a good idea to prepare your home for certain environmental factors rather than deal with them after an inspection. Be sure to treat fittings and fixtures appropriately, use weatherproof finishes and paint on your exteriors, and cover up your furniture in order to minimize the effects of weather-related damage. You may also consider purchasing extended warranties or insurance on your electrical devices, just to be sure.
Not researching before hiring an inspector
When it comes to home inspections, it’s not a good idea to hire an inspector without doing some research first, even if the inspector was recommended to you by someone you trust. The quality of a home inspection depends entirely on the inspector who performs it.
Look for an experienced, certified professional who knows what to look for in an island home. You want to hire an inspector who can show you your property’s strengths and weaknesses, which will give you what you need to know to sell it at the best price possible.
Letting Buyers do the presale inspection
One common mistake committed by many Sellers is leaving the presale inspection to the Buyer. Once the Buyer completes the inspection, a Seller is usually left with a tight schedule to perform the necessary repairs.
Sellers who get a home inspection before listing the property have more time to work with. You can shop around for more cost-efficient options and perform the needed repairs without having to rush. And, you are in a stronger position to stick to the original agreed sale price, rather than capitulating to costs concerns raised by the Buyer as a result of the inspection.
Remember to look for an inspector weeks or months before putting your home on the market. You don’t want to find a good inspector right when you’re about to sell your home, only to find out he or she is already fully booked.
Not preparing your home prior to inspection
Homeowners who don’t make an effort to prepare their home before an inspection can be annoying for many professional inspectors. You want to make everything easily accessible for the inspector. Emptying the contents of your closets or cabinets, for example, isn’t part of an inspector’s job.
Likewise, be sure to unlock all rooms including sheds and utility closets, or provide keys if you can’t be present during the inspection. Try to be there personally so you can introduce yourself to the inspector, answer any questions he or she may have, and give them your mobile number in case you have to go somewhere else.
If you’re living in the US Virgin Islands and need help selling your home, get in touch with Barbara anytime at Sea Glass Properties by calling (340) 690-9995 or leaving us a message at Barbara(at)seaglassproperties(dotted)com.