Q and A: What Are The Most Common Problems For Home Sellers?

A question that we get a fair amount of time is “When we’re going to sell our home, what are the things that come up a lot of times in our inspection?” As a home seller, what are you looking forward to trying to make sure that things are in order before you get into an accepted offer, pending deal and then get into the inspection? I outlined a few things here. This encompasses, might be a thing or two that show up as well, possibly from time to time obviously, but these are some of the biggest things that we see a lot of times.


This is Michigan. It’s what happens and it leads to – from a lot of times – venting in an attic. We see it a lot here in Michigan, homeowners, for whatever reason, in the sixties and seventies when many, many homes were built, we had people vented their bathrooms into the attic for some reason and then condensation builds up and then mold happens.

Venting in the Attic

So we see venting into the attic and then it creates mold a lot of times. And, and again, just the climate we live in, we see mold. Not every house obviously, but there’s a good chunk of homes that see those issues come up. So these are again things that most common home seller problems that you see in an inspection.

So again, just wanting to get that out there for you, that way you are ready, prepared for what was going to happen or potentially happen to your home. More or less, I want you to know that so that you can check on these things before you even get to that point.

GFCI outlets (Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter)

Those are the outlets that have the reset button on them, the red and black reset buttons, those have to be within about three feet of any water source. So we see a lot of times those, that’s code now. It wasn’t built like that before. People had just regular outlets next to their sink, next to their washer, their kitchen sink, whatever it may be. And you have to have FCI outlets now close to those water sources. So we see that flagged a lot.


This is a very simple thing, but you’d be incredibly surprised or maybe you want to be surprised how many people don’t have their downspouts on their house hooked up to their gutters. There is just water pouring into the side of the house and people wonder why they have water problems in their basement. They have mold in their basement. They’ve got water problems in their basement, they developed cracks in the foundation, wherever it may be. It’s because of a lot of times the downspouts and sometimes it might be grading and that does need to get fixed from time to time. Those come up, but downspouts, that is a huge reason. We see it a lot and water are just draining right into the side of the home and it seeping down into the home. So a big, big one, an easy one. Just do a simple walk around your home once a week, once every two weeks to make sure the downspouts aren’t off the home and they’re hooked up.

Sump Pump

We’ve seen this one a lot for so those you’d have some pumps that are getting the excess water. If there’s ever a flood in the basement or anything like that and getting that water out of your basement and drain that out. This a lot of times the sump pump is broken or just inoperative. A lot of times people don’t know because fortunately, they don’t have to use it ever. So when it does go to an inspection and people are looking at it, that’s not an operational lot of times and that comes up in an inspection report.

Cracked Concrete

Then we get to cracked concrete. We see that a lot when you have an FHA or VA offer and things like that, that gets flagged a lot of times in those offers. Foundation cracks, sidewalk cracks, driveway cracks, if you’re tripping hazards, things like that.

Handrails not Attached

We also see in FHA or VA, we see a lot of handrails not being on either the steps outside of the home or on stairways or decks that were built. Not having proper handrails.


Having smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors. That’s a big one too. They flag a lot.

So these are things that you’d be really surprised that a lot of people don’t have those in their home. They’re not operational. Again, those things get flagged a lot. Very common thing. Unfortunately, as you can see here, these really aren’t big things. Obviously, we have a cracked foundation and you have really bad heaving or probably like that. That could be a major problem obviously, but basically, everything else is fairly minute. You really don’t have too, too many issues. Things that can come up, AC’s, furnaces and all those things that might not work. But generally, those things work if people usually use them somewhat consistently, all of those things don’t necessarily affect your everyday life. Some of those are things that just kind of slipped by. They have a tendency to show up and inspection reports and you just don’t have to deal with them in everyday life usually. So they can just go by they, they passed your radar and you just don’t notice and then all of a sudden you’re selling a home and inspection comes back. You’ve got four things you need to fix and then you’re freaking out. Not in the world, these aren’t huge fixes, the time and the money cost is not that big for all these things. It’s just being prepared and creating a seamless process. That way you can get your home sold with as little stress as possible.

So I hope that gives you some indication as to what to look for going in an inspection. Hopefully, it does. This is some of the stuff that we see on so many inspection reports. When sellers get a report back, they’re blown away a lot of times. They’re like “Wow! What the heck?” It’s really not the end of the world. Just things to be aware of and to prep for going and especially hopefully clear a lot of these things up. That way the buyers aren’t freaked out and they’re not getting cold feet and you’re not freaked out and stressed out. So, let me know what you guys think or anything else that you might have a question in the comment or concerned about. I appreciate you guys watching these videos so much. It means the world to us and your time and attention because it’s the most important thing we have. So I appreciate you all and we’ll see you soon.