Sometimes the most frustrating part of selling or buying a home is the dreaded “R” word – repairs.
Even when all parties want the same end result, the home repairs can be a big stumbling block. It’s no picnic for the real estate agents either! Things go much smoother when everybody knows and follows the rules.
Here’s the deal.
The Buyer and Seller have agreed on certain repairs that the Seller will make prior to closing. The agreement for repairs is made in the body of the contract (TXR-1601, par 7.D, Property Condition), or in the form of an Amendment to the Contract after the Buyer completes the home inspections.
But before you crack open your trusty toolbox, review what the contract says about repairs. These are the rules “unless the Buyer and Seller agree otherwise in writing.”
- Repairs must be done prior to closing
- All required permits must be obtained
- Repairs must be done by a licensed tradesman if a license is required (plumbing, electrical, HVAC, etc)
- If no license is required, by someone commercially engaged in the trade of providing such repairs
- At Buyers election, any transferable warranties will be transferred to Buyer at the Buyers expense
Note: This does not provide for the Buyer to designate who makes the repairs
Remember, the best surprise is no surprise.
The Seller should retain a copy of all invoices and proof of payment for every repair, as evidence that the repairs have been made in accordance with the agreements. It’s good practice to resolve all the repairs as far in advance of closing as possible, with communication of completion between the parties. It’s also good practice for the Buyer to do a final walk-through before closing, and any necessary reinspections well in advance.
Your REALTOR® can make all the difference here. Their knowledge and ability to handle these issues is critical to a smooth closing. North Point Realty agents are seasoned professionals, at your service.
Here’s an excerpt from the Texas Real Estate contract regarding repairs (TXR-1601, par 7.F):
COMPLETION OF REPAIRS AND TREATMENTS: Unless otherwise agreed in writing: (i) Seller
shall complete all agreed repairs and treatments prior to the Closing Date; and (ii) all required
permits must be obtained, and repairs and treatments must be performed by persons who are
licensed to provide such repairs or treatments or, if no license is required by law, are
commercially engaged in the trade of providing such repairs or treatments. At Buyer’s
election, any transferable warranties received by Seller with respect to the repairs and
treatments will be transferred to Buyer at Buyer’s expense. If Seller fails to complete any
agreed repairs and treatments prior to the Closing Date, Buyer may exercise remedies under
Paragraph 15 or extend the Closing Date up to 5 days if necessary for Seller to complete the
repairs and treatments.