How to Ask for Home Fixes before Buying


Homeowners probably know, and first-time home shoppers may have heard, that you can actually request certain home repairs from a seller before buying a house. Conditions are put on home deals all the time. Now, nothing says the seller has to honor the requests or do anything at all other than sell you the house.

A seller may be more inclined to make repairs in a buyer’s market, in which there are more sellers than buyers, and house demand is low. But no matter what type of market you’re in, you can ask sellers to fix certain things before you buy.

If you’ve been checking out Burlington houses for sale and have your eye on a home that needs some work first, here is some advice on working with a seller on that.

Stick to Major Issues

If you’re going to make repair requests at all, you should keep them focused on major issues, such as damaged roofs or siding, ungrounded wiring, or anything else that threatens the safety of the home.

Even though these are semi-big fixes, they are obviously more worthy of consideration than something like bad tiling in the bathroom or a leaky kitchen sink. Those are small jobs that should not hold back a home sale. But if the roof is on its last legs, you may ask the sellers to fix it before selling.

The sellers might agree, or they may not. Or they may tell you to fix it if they knock off the cost from the home price.

Request a Home Warranty

You can also ask that the seller purchase a home warranty for the home before selling it to you. These warranties are typically year-long coverage for major home issues that could go wrong in the first year of your ownership.

Generally, warranties cover any breaks in the major appliances, HVAC system, plumbing, and more. Again, the seller is not obliged to do anything for you, but under the right conditions, if the seller really wants to move the house and get on with life, they may grant the request.

Always Be Polite

Lastly, whatever you do, be polite about it. Now, it’s true that if you are working with a real estate agent, the agent might make this request on your behalf to the seller’s agent, but remember that in all your dealings, you should be polite and respectful. This is someone else’s home we’re talking about. Pride and feelings are involved.

But if you take the calm and reasonable approach, you may just strike a deal.

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