Questions About Today’s Real Estate? Ask Phyllis!

Is Waiving The Home Inspection A Mistake?

Dear Phyllis,
My daughter recently purchased a home in Orange County. It’s a seller’s market there just like the Foothill’s. Because there were multiple offers, her real estate agent suggested that they consider waiving their home inspection. The home appeared to be well maintained and she didn’t want to lose it, so she did waive her inspection. After she moved in, she discovered a major problem with the air conditioning. Was her waiving the home inspection a big mistake?

Dear Jenny,
Have your daughter check if she has a home protection policy. If she does, she should contact them immediately. Often buyers negotiate that the seller provide a one-year home protection policy. These policies generally cover the working components of the home including air conditioning.

Is waiving the home inspection a big mistake? Sometimes when a home is so outdated a buyer will know that they need to update everything and waiving the inspection may make sense to that buyer in this instance. In hindsight, perhaps the seller’s agent would have allowed your daughter to have a home inspection prior to accepting her offer. But likely even knowing the problem with the air conditioning would not have swayed your daughter from purchasing this home.

It’s a very competitive real estate market and buyers are looking for any advantage. It is a big advantage for the seller when a buyer waives their home inspection. But is it a big mistake? It could very well be the reason your daughter’s offer was accepted over all the others.

You don’t specify the problem with the air conditioning. But if it was something the seller was aware of it should have been disclosed on their Transfer Disclosure Statement (TDS). By law, the seller must disclose all known defects. If there is a sticker on the unit noting who has previously worked on it, I suggest she contact that vendor to learn more. If the seller was aware of a problem and failed to disclose it, the seller is liable. In this case your daughter should have her agent reach out to the seller’s agent.