“Seek & You Shall Find” — Not

Test your knowledge of municipal point-of-sale inspections by answering the following question:

True or false:  if a home’s roof is past its useful life and needs replacement, the city inspection will catch it.

Answer:  False.

I’m handling a deal now — and have been involved with numerous others over the years — where the city inspection was silent about the condition of the roof, and the homeowner even obtained a Certificate of Compliance.

Yet scarcely weeks later (if the deal happened soon in the listing), the Buyer’s inspection clearly documented that the roof was bad — and the Buyer and Seller ultimately adjusted the purchase price to replace it.

What’s THAT about?

Seek & You Shall Find

The answer is that municipal point-of-sale inspections aren’t (necessarily) about determining whether a given home is in good condition (or not); rather, the focus is whether the home is safe to occupy.

An old (or failing) roof may be a big financial outlay — but it usually doesn’t pose an imminent safety threat.

Secondarily, (some) cities inspect to safeguard the health and safety of their communities — not the prospective Buyer of the home.

So, in the Twin Cities, several municipalities inspect to make sure that homes have sealed wells and backflow preventers.

The concern?

Negative pressure will cause contaminated water to end up in the city’s water supply.

For more thoughts on city inspections, seeAre Municipal Inspections a Waste of Time?”

About the author

Ross Kaplan has 19+ years experience selling real estate all over the Twin Cities. He is also a 12-time consecutive "Super Real Estate Agent," as determined by Mpls. - St. Paul Magazine and Twin Cities Business Magazine. Prior to becoming a Realtor, Ross was an attorney (corporate law), CPA, and entrepreneur. He holds an economics degree from Stanford.

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