Is a Building Inspection Required for a Private Sale of a House?

Is a Building Inspection Required for a Private Sale of a House?


Having a professional conduct a building and pest inspection to inspect the physical condition of a house should be an essential step before purchasing or buying a home even for a private sale. It provides an accurate representation of the home and helps to ensure you are getting the most for what you are paying.

Private Home Sales
Privately selling property without real estate agents eliminates any need for a typical inspection, however it is still recommended from both a buyer and seller perspective to have a building inspection. Although not completing a building inspection could potentially save the buyer dollars and time on both ends of the transaction, the seller will be buying a home that they have no idea whether it has any underlying issues, such as structural issues or termite damage.

What happens when selling your property privately?
  • The home is advertised via the sellers chosen channels, and potential buyers are encouraged to make offers
  • The seller and home buyer agree on a sale price through negotiation, typically with the assistance of a real estate agent
  • If the contract is agreed upon or conditional
It can be helpful in a private sale to make a sale "subject to finance" when you're trying to sell your property. This means that the buyer will need an approved loan before they take ownership of the home from you, and if they can't get one, the contract becomes null.

What are common selling conditions when selling your house privately?
  • Subject to sale, meaning the buyer needs to successfully sell their previous home before finalising the new property purchase
  • Subject to a satisfactory building inspection
  • Subject to finance, meaning the buyer is required to receive an approved home loan from the bank
If the contract is subject to finance/getting a loan, the buyer should always nominate a lender in the relevant section of the agreement.

Satisfactory Inspection Conditions
In most cases, unless the property is considered a tear-down home, buyers will include an inspection contingency in their offer. This clause allows the buyer to walk away from the agreement if a thorough inspection reveals significant or expensive-to-repair flaws with the new house's structure. Different states have different laws that govern inspections for homes.

Remember, inspections are a very important part of the home buying process, so they should not be overlooked or taken lightly. It involves a professional inspector walking through the property to examine it for structural problems or damages.

Are Home Inspections Absolutely Necessary?
Not having a home inspection for a private sale of a house does happen and can be an appropriate strategy to facilitate a streamlined closing for sellers of distressed homes or inherited property who may prefer these terms on occasion.

Flippers and investors will likely be well acquainted with this option, too, making them the perfect customer base, given their familiarity with ease-of-closing deals.

It is also popular for those who are just interested in the sale of land and intend to tear down the home to build a new one.

What is a Home Inspection?
A home inspection is an indispensable tool in the arsenal of every buyer. Without one, you can't be sure that your investment is sound and won't suddenly fall apart on its own accord. A good building inspector will check for structural problems like mould or water damage and provide you with a comprehensive report which includes detailed pictures to show any issues they found during their assessment. Here’s more on what to expect in your building inspection report from a recent blog.

If you are trying to sell a home, don't be surprised when a potential buyer requests an inspection report. And if you are buying, don't be talked out of an inspection too quickly as you may not know what damage there is under the main structure. Plus it doesn’t take a lot of time to complete a building inspection so why not just do it.

Pre-Sale Inspection
In a home sale, the inspection should take place before the sale (pre-sale inspection). It can also be done before the home is put on the market to prepare the house for sale. In addition, sellers now have the opportunity to address any issues they may be facing and calculate the worth of their property before a buyer makes an inspection.

If you are looking to sell your home, having this time allows you and your agent more freedom in fixing anything that might need to be addressed without being under pressure from buyers who want it done immediately.

Buyers Inspection
The buyer's inspections can happen after they make an offer to a seller and have their terms accepted, but it should be done before the sales contract is signed and earnest money is transferred. The buyer is the one who pays for this home inspection, which can cost between $200 and $1,000, depending on location, size, and property type.

When purchasing a new home, we highly recommend speaking to us about our combined inspection or comprehensive inspection, which will give you the peace of mind you need as a home buyer. In saying this, you can also book in a structural inspection and termite inspection as separate inspections.

Why Building Inspections are Recommended
Home inspections reveal all the damages and hazards of the property, allowing the buyer to make an informed decision on a home.

If you are a buyer and want to know the condition of your potential home, a building inspection is vital. Finding out the state of the home and any serious or even just minor issues can give you some negotiating power.

When is the property officially sold in a private sale?
Officially, the property is sold when both the buyer and seller have signed the contract of sale. The buyer signs the contract of purchase to make an offer, and the seller accepts it by signing the contract of sale

Contact Us
At SURE Building & Pest, we pride ourselves on providing Perth homeowners with the highest quality property inspection services. Our extensive range of building and pest inspections comes with detailed reports sent on the same day of the inspection. We are the only inspection company in Western Australia who backs up their reports with 12 months of free advice!
Contact us today to book or enquire about our inspections on 0423 342 362 or book now.