The relocation home inspection was clear, how can the buyers be asking for all these repairs?

Unfortunately, this is something relocation professionals hear all too often from their clients during an inventory home sale transaction. So why is it that a buyer’s home inspection always seems to be so much more thorough than the inspection done by the relocation company? It helps to first take a look at the scope of both inspections.   

A relocation home inspection, known in the industry as a Relocation Property Assessment is done primarily to provide a professional opinion of the relocating employee's main dwelling and its immediate surrounding area in its "as is" condition as of the date of assessment, limited to definitions and guidelines as established by the corporate client. It is a visual, non-invasive evaluation detailing apparent defects (not cosmetic deficiencies) that call for corrective action limited to three categories:  

  • Structure
  • Unsafe or hazardous conditions
  • Inoperative systems or appliances

A General Home Inspection performed for a potential buyer, on the other hand,  contains many opinions that the Relocation Property Assessment does not, i.e., deferred maintenance, “potential” problems that may develop in the near future, code violations, and many minor, possible even cosmetic items. The scope of this inspection is so that a potential buyer can get a full and complete picture of the whole house that they may be purchasing, which is why it is sometimes referred to as a “whole house inspection”.   

Since the two inspections have very different scopes and are done for very different purposes there are often many perceived “discrepancies” between the two reports. It is important for relocation professionals to understand the differences between these two, very different reports so that they may educate their corporate clients and provide professional advice to them to hopefully keep the deal together. This should be everyone’s goal in today’s real estate environment.