The Art of the Buyers Inspection Report


There’s nothing like the feeling of stepping into your new home for the first time.

When it’s a new build, you know yours are the first feet (hopefully) to walk barefoot across the carpet and the scent of fresh paint still is in the air. When you purchase a resale home, however, it may not always be perfect when you first walk in. But we still want it as perfect as possible, which is understandable.

In Arizona, when buyers and sellers use the AAR Residential Resale Purchase Contract, buyers have a 10-day inspection period in which to complete their due diligence. At any point during that timeframe, but no later than the 10 days, the buyers need to send the sellers a Buyers Inspection Notice in which the buyers can make one of three choices regarding the property:

  1. They can accept the property as is
  2. They can cancel the contract
  3. They can request repairs

More often than not, buyers opt for the third; every home, no matter how well maintained, has a couple of minor items that could use some correction.

Once the sellers receive the notice, they have five days to decide what if anything they’re going to fix. And if the sellers don’t agree to fix everything, the buyers have five days to decide whether or not to keep the home.

Like about everything else, there’s an art to negotiating repairs on a home. Sometimes, it’s better to let the real minor issues go to make sure the bigger ones get done.

Think of it as a chore list for your kids (or a honey-do list for your spouse) … the longer the list, the less likely everything will get done. Instead, the child (or your childish spouse) will do the easy stuff and ignore the bigger items that really were the point of the exercise.

Here are a few examples of ticky-tack items that, in the grand scheme of things, might be better left unrequested. (Any resemblance between these and the BINSR that I received on a listing last night are totally not coincidental.)

1) Exterior electrical outlet missing waterproof cover – retail cost? Less than $10.

2) Anti-siphon devices for exterior hose bibbs – retail cost? $4.

3) A cover for a light in the garage – retail cost? Depends on what you want … but seriously?

4) Anti-tip bracket for the built-in oven – retail cost? $10 or less.

What, you may ask, is the big deal? These all are relatively inexpensive repairs, right?

Of course they are. No seller ought be put out by these individually. But as part of a laundry list where there are bigger items for the seller also to consider, it’s generally best to skip the $4 anti-siphon valve or the anti-tip bracket which, while currently required, wasn’t mandatory on a property in an active adult community built back in 1974. There’s an expression about this involving mountains and molehills, if I recall.

Don’t compromise on the major, must-have details and repairs when you’re purchasing your home. But don’t let them get lost among a silly list of “repairs”.

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Speaking of homes in active adult communities, check out the pictures on these beautiful homes for sale inĀ Sun City Grand Homes for Sale

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Jonathan Dalton

Jonathan Dalton is a 40-plus-year resident of the Valley and has been helping folks buy and sell homes since 2004. He can be reached at 602-502-9693 or info at