In this highly competitive Twin Cities market, some buyers choose to waive their home inspection contingency in order to make their offer more competitive. 

When buyers agree to purchase “as is” or without an inspection contingency, they are eliminating the negotiation process where sellers might be asked to repair items discovered during an inspection. They are also reducing or eliminating rights to due process for disputed property conditions.

Buyers in this situation may think an inspection is a wasted investment but this is simply not true!

There’s value in learning as much as you can about your property, whether the inspection happens as part of your purchase agreement or the week you take ownership.

If you skip the inspection initially, there’s a key advantage to having an inspection the week you take possession of the property. Today’s true story is a cautionary tale about what can happen if you put off the inspection for months or even years after you move in. 

A Cautionary Tale

“The Smiths” recently contacted me to perform a home inspection. They purchased a Twin Cities’ suburban home in 2022 (“as-is” with no inspection). Within days of moving in, they noticed some significant issues with their new home. Backyard drainage issues resulted in moisture intrusion into the basement. An improperly built out-building roof leaked. The resultant structural damage, likely fungal contamination, and ruined finish materials were estimated to cost more than $30,000 to repair. None of these issues were mentioned in the seller’s disclosure form. For the health and safety of their family, they knew they’d have to address these issues but they didn’t have the tens of thousands of dollars these repairs required. 

As weeks passed, the Smiths visited with some neighbors who divulged that the seller was definitely aware of the property’s issues. The Smiths thought they had the smoking gun – their neighbors’ testimony! They hired an attorney to go after the seller for failing to disclose certain property conditions. They contacted me to have the property inspected more than 18 months after moving into the home.


waive inspection contingency


Unfortunately, for the Smiths and many in this situation, they waited too long to have the property assessed by an expert and could no longer re-create the condition of the property when they first acquired it. Attorneys’ fees mount quickly and sadly, most homeowners in this situation will not see a favorable outcome. It’s too late. Bottom line: a home inspection upon move-in helps to identify a home’s major issues and vulnerabilities so you are best prepared to take action. 

Safety & Liability

Our top priority in a home inspection is to discover issues that could impact the safety or health of our clients. For example, do you know if that outlet next to your kitchen sink is GFCI-protected (to prevent you from being electrocuted?) Surprisingly, I inspect homes every week that do not have adequate smoke/carbon-monoxide detectors or proper egress windows. These safety defects may seem minor in comparison to an unstable foundation. However, if you ask anyone who has been involved in a house fire, these “details” were awfully important, even life-saving! 

Additionally, it’s important to consider that if someone gets injured on your property, you may be held responsible. Being made aware of potential safety hazards so you can address them is a critical benefit of the inspection process. 

Prioritized Repair List

As a certified master home inspector, I’m trained to look for things many people will not notice. Our inspection report serves as a detailed reminder of those items needing repair in the home. Many of the items don’t need doing right away, but as time and resources allow. The finished report has detailed explanations, photos, and videos to remind you of the items discovered so they can be addressed as your schedule and budget allows.


sample home inspection report


In the End

Getting a home inspection has value in nearly every situation, even when you are purchasing a property “as-is” (or if your non-contingent offer was accepted).  It will protect you, your family, and your guests from unsafe or unhealthy conditions. It will provide a blueprint for you to allocate resources to the most important issues in your property. Lastly, it will help give you peace of mind in what is typically a very stressful situation. Who doesn’t want a home purchase with fewer surprises? 

If we can help, please call our office at (612) 440-8466!