I sometimes get asked about waiving one or all contingencies in a real estate contract, to help make for a more aggressive offer in a competitive sellers’ market. The main contingencies in most real estate contracts are the appraisal contingency, the financing contingency, the termite inspection contingency, and the home inspection contingency. I am not a proponent or an opponent of any of these strategies, but simply want to discuss the pros and cons of each, since it is a question I do get. In this blog I’d like to discuss waiving the Home Inspection contingency.
Believe it or not this is one of the contingencies I see most frequently waived, and I think this is due to one of two reasons.
One reason is that sometimes a buyer will arrange a pre-inspection and walk through the house with their realtor and home inspector before making an offer. I think this is smart if you really think you want to write an offer on the home. If you do this too much you will find yourself spending a small fortune in home inspection fees, so obviously only do this on a home you are very serious about buying.
The second reason I see people waiving a home inspection contingency is simply guesswork. I have seen some clients who feel they have been in enough houses to know a problem house when they see it. Maybe the house is of a fairly recent construction and they don’t think there will be significant problems, or they think they have enough cash so that if they find some problems with the home after they purchase it, they’ll have them fixed then. Some people are so enamored with the house that they don’t care about spending money on an unforeseen issue.
The truth is, most home inspections I have seen seem to yield a laundry list of “fix it” items that are more handyman repairs, than serious and expensive problems. It is obviously up to each buyer as to what to do if they are considering waiving a home inspection contingency. Yours truly would never do that, not at least without a pre-inspection first.