Ask Abby: Home inspections can save time, money and worry

Hi Abby,

I’m moving from my house in Sylvan Park that I have been fixing up to a newly renovated home in East Nashville. Do I have to pay for an inspection of both houses?

Selling in Sylvan Park

Dear Selling in Sylvan:

Do you have to pay for the inspections as the seller? No, but you might consider an inspection prior to putting your house on the market, as it is a small price to pay for peace of mind during such a stressful event.

Consider what a home inspection has to offer for each participant in the home sale process. Let’s start with the homeowner who is thinking about moving and about to list a property for sale, because usually they are the ones that think they have nothing to gain and everything to lose from a home inspection. In actuality, nothing could be further from the truth.

No matter what condition the property is in (good, bad or somewhere in the middle), the smartest thing a seller can do is to spend the money necessary for an accurate home inspection and termite inspection. Spending a little money up front can save you considerable money and stress on the back-end. Possessing this information prior to listing your home for sale not only enables you to plan, but also to price your property accurately.

What you can learn from these reports allows you to take care of any repairs that you feel are necessary on your time schedule, and to obtain bids from various contractors for repairs you don’t want to tackle yourself, which could save you a lot of money in the process. When you do list your property for sale, you are ahead of the game, because you already know everything potential buyers will find in their inspections. 

Hopefully, you will have minimized their inspection results, and are thus better prepared for the negotiation that will follow. This negotiating strength will allow you to realize as much of your equity as possible to be used to purchase your new home.

Now consider what the necessary home inspections offer a buyer. A home inspection is an objective visual examination of the physical structure and systems of a home, from its roof to its foundation. It is the equivalent of a physical examination from your doctor. When problems or symptoms of problems are found, the inspector may recommend further evaluation or remedies.

The home inspection summarizes the condition of a property, points out the need for major repairs, and identifies areas that may need attention in the near future. Buyers and sellers depend on an accurate home inspection to maximize their knowledge of the property in order to make intelligent decisions before buying or selling a home. It points out the positive aspects of a home, as well as the maintenance that will be necessary to keep it in good shape.

After an inspection, both parties have a much clearer understanding of the value and needs of the property. And of course there are a variety of other inspections to choose from to get a clearer, more complete picture of your home to be. Some of these inspections can include the termite inspection, a heat and air inspection, a radon inspection, and for properties with extra amenities, there are pool inspections, irrigation system inspections, and the list goes on.

So once again, do you have to pay for the inspections as a seller? No, but it’s a good idea to be an informed seller. Just remember, there is nothing to fear from home inspections, what should be frightening is the unknown. Inspections are simply a tool to be used in a positive way to bring about a positive home sale experience.

I hope this helps, and if I can answer any other questions, please feel free to call or email me.


Email your real estate questions to Abby at

Photo by Margo Amala on Unsplash

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