A Buyer’s Choice Home Inspections (ABCHI) is proud to be part of a new national coalition of home inspectors – Canadian Home Inspectors for Consumers (CHIC) – established to help protect Canadians at risk of missing out on a home inspection due to demands associated with hot housing markets.
CHIC was formed to educate the public about the importance of a home inspection, and advocate for Canadians who may be treated unfairly when buying a home, as prospective homebuyers find themselves in heated bidding wars, and feel the pressure to keep their offer competitive by forgoing a home inspection.
This means that homebuyers are often making the biggest financial commitment of their lives without being able to make an informed decision. This creates huge financial risk with unforeseen problems lurking that include wet basements, mould in attics, structural problems, unsafe electrical systems, obsolete plumbing systems, heating and cooling equipment at the end of their lifecycles, and worn-out roofs.
Many homebuyers have put all their funds – and often their parents’ money too – into down payments, which means they don’t have spare resources available to handle unexpected repairs. And home repairs often come with a hefty price tag.
The federal government is aligned with protecting Canadians by way of the Home Buyers’ Bill of Rights, which commits to: “Establishing a legal right to a home inspection to make sure that buyers have the peace of mind that their investment is sound.”
The current lack of transparency creates an unfair and unacceptable situation for Canadians. Homebuyers should know what they’re buying – and they can’t possibly know everything without a professional home inspection.
There are several ways to address this problem, including the following:
Pre-listing inspections for every resale home
A pre-listing inspection is performed before the property goes on the market, with the report made available for all prospective buyers. This is the best solution as it creates a level playing field for all parties. It’s simple, fair, cost effective and readily available, and it protects both the seller and buyer. Pre-listing inspections also bring serious, well-informed prospective buyers to the table, and protect sellers and real estate agents from lawsuits by unhappy buyers.
A pre-offer inspection is performed by a prospective buyer before presenting an offer, allowing them to make an informed decision on whether – and how much – to bid on a home. One possible disadvantage is that the buyer may not be successful, wasting the inspection fee.
In some markets, sellers are not allowing a home inspection. This practice is completely unfair, however, as a 30-minute walkthrough is no substitute for a three-hour professional home inspection.
A cooling-off period gives homebuyers a few days to confirm the sale. This allows time for a home inspection. Sales of new condos already have a seven- or 10-day cooling-off period. This concept is very similar.
A post-sale home inspection is performed after the buyer takes possession of the home. It provides the buyer with great information about the home, but it’s too late to help them make an informed buying decision.
The ability to make an informed decision should be a right for every homebuyer across Canada.
Find an Inspector near you: https://abuyerschoice.com/locations