This week the City of Crystal repealed their point of sale inspection program after much discussion. Enacted in 1992, this program (which is similar in 12 other cites including Minneapolis, Hopkins, St. Paul) was designed to encourage/force home owners to keep their properties maintained. I have found that it really doesn’t accomplish this goal. The inspection is performed and the seller simply forces the buyer’s to assume responsibility for those repairs.
Buyers are no longer worried if the point of sale inspection has 0 or 20 items on it. They are buying the houses anyways. The buyers are not forcing the sellers to perform the repairs and I suspect most sellers would simply say no. All the inspection does is add more paperwork and costs (price for inspection is about $100).
I am not suggesting that we should let properties run down, but we should let the free market decide how to handle this. Almost all buyers have home inspections during purchase, they will catch all the same items that a point of sale inspection catches (and more). The buyer can decide what items are important and what are worth asking the seller to do or spend money themselves.
Being required to perform these point of sale inspections was even more a waste of money when doing a flip. Customer would buy a house that had an inspection, fix it up in 90 days and then have to do another inspection in order to sell it.
Now if we can make the one in Minneapolis go away, that would be great!
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