property inspection

Be Prepared (for an inspection!)

How do you prepare for an occupancy inspection?

Occupancy inspection or property inspection: two different terms that sometimes get mixed up.

An occupancy inspection is a building inspector usually hired by the city (or that works for the city) who is trying to say, “is this property safe and legitimate to be occupied?” They are going to look for items like handrails on stairways, smoke detectors in all appropriate places, proper ingress and egress (in other words can you get in and out of the house if something’s on fire). These are issues you’ll want to consult your local zoning office or construction code office about. Ask them, “What do I need to do to make sure my place is safe and will pass an occupancy inspection?” If you’re flipping a property, the home owner or buyer may hire a property inspector or home inspector.

They’re going to terrorize your property from top to bottom looking for any potential issues that the homeowner may experience in the future or errors that you made in your construction. To prepare for one of these you have to make sure 1. You do your construction right. Walk through the property after you’re done with the construction and really look at it as the buyer. Make sure light switches work, make sure doors open all the way and don’t get caught up on un-level floors, make sure foundation walls are straight, make sure the panel is correct and up to code. There’s going to be a ton of these hits and you’ll never have a clean report from a property inspector because they’re hired to find problems.

So be prepared after the property inspection to go back in and correct some of these problems. You don’t have to correct them all, though! You can just correct certain ones and negotiate with a buyer after that. One of the tricks that we use is we’ll get the property inspection report and we’ll give the buyer a lump sum of money to correct the issues on their own. This allows us to get the deal done fast and doesn’t create any future liability for us if the fixes aren’t up to par.

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