How can I reduce or renegotiate the price after a building inspection?

The Pre-Purchase building inspection process

You find the home of your dreams, Congratulations!  Now it’s time to arrange your building inspection and timber pest inspection with a suitable and qualified building and pest company.

What happens next?

After the inspection, the inspector provides a property report which has detailed some major defects that require attention.

Understanding the outcomes of your final property inspection is crucial when it comes to renegotiating the price. A thorough knowledge of the building issues helps assess the true worth of a property and determine if the initial asking price is justified.

Why get a building inspection?

A building inspection is an integral part of the property purchase process as it allows potential buyers to assess the condition of the property and identify any major issues that may require repairs, replacements, or additional costs.

Not all issues are equal in terms of their impact on the property’s value and safety. Some issues might be minor and easily fixable, while others could be major structural problems. Both the buyer and the seller should prioritise which issues are most important to address. The report will help both parties understand the extent and seriousness of the problems.

The buyer can request that the seller address certain issues before the sale is finalised. This could involve repairing the problems, offering credit to the buyer, or reducing the purchase price. The seller can then decide whether to accommodate these requests or counteroffer.

It’s important to be prepared to negotiate and compromise, aiming for a mutually beneficial solution. Remember, the seller may not be legally required to agree to any renegotiation or price reduction, so maintaining a professional and level-headed demeanour is crucial.

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Get an understanding of repair costs

After receiving a building inspection report, it is common for buyers to find issues that were not previously disclosed by the seller. These findings can be a basis for approaching the seller to renegotiate the price or request a reduction based on the discovered issues.

Buyers should approach the seller calmly and reasonably, highlighting the issues from the report and providing evidence if necessary. Obtaining estimates for the repair costs can strengthen the buyer’s position during negotiations.

You could reach out to the inspector and ask him if they have any indication of repair costs.

They may be able to give you a rough estimate based on their observations during the inspection. Usually, they will be able to give you ballpark figures if not ring a suitable trade for the defect found and explain the issue and see if they can give you an estimate over the phone. Some may even be able to give you a physical quote if you provide enough information and photos. However, it is important to keep in mind that the inspector’s estimate is not a substitute for professional quotes from contractors and other specialists.

Seeking legal advice and consulting with a real estate agent can help buyers understand their options and rights. If a fair resolution cannot be reached, buyers may need to reconsider their purchase or seek further advice to protect their interests.

By following these steps, buyers can protect their interests and ensure a fair resolution in the negotiation process.

detailed building inspection with property report to enumerate the repair costs

A detailed property report that includes an estimate of the repair cost will be useful when negotiating the price of the property that you want to buy.

Once you have an estimate or physical quotes it’s time to negotiate with the seller.

Negotiating the Price After a Building Inspection

When negotiating the price after a building inspection, strategic engagement is key. Begin by directly addressing the salesperson with the inspection report detailing defects and repair estimates.

Clearly articulate these issues and associated costs, maintaining clarity and conciseness. Additionally, involving legal representatives, such as solicitors or conveyancers, can facilitate discussions with the seller’s representatives, ensuring professionalism and addressing legal considerations.

Support negotiation with evidence like contractor quotes to substantiate requests and remain open to compromise. If the seller hesitates to reduce the purchase price, explore alternative solutions like repair agreements before closing or cost-sharing arrangements.

Success in negotiation relies on professionalism, thorough preparation, and collaboration, guided by insights from a certified building inspector to ensure adjustments sufficiently cover repair expenses.


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Team at Clear View Property Inspection on site

It’s crucial to ensure satisfaction with the discount before proceeding, considering potential escalation of repair costs. Take recommendations from the inspector seriously to determine an appropriate discount, avoiding unforeseen expenses. Failing to address recommended repairs could lead to complications later, impacting both resale value and property condition.

A careful, informed negotiation approach aligns with buyer goals, emphasizing professionalism and respect to foster a positive seller relationship and secure a mutually beneficial agreement.

What if they refuse to give you a discount?

So, you have made your offer for a reduced sale price and the seller does not want to play ball. NO NO NO, take it or leave it they say. In this case you really need to assess the purchase price and assess if the price of the property has already been discounted compared to theirs allowing for repairs or if the property is overpriced considering the repairs required.

If the seller refuses to give you a discount, there are still options available.

One option is to request that the seller complete the necessary repairs before closing. Alternatively, you could also negotiate for a seller credit at closing to cover the cost of the repairs.

It is important to keep in mind that negotiations are a two-way street, and it may be necessary to make some concessions in order to reach an agreement that satisfies both parties. Remaining flexible and open to alternative solutions can help ensure that the negotiation process remains productive and respectful.

Ultimately, it is up to the buyer to decide whether they are willing to move forward with a purchase if their requests for repairs or a discount are not met.

Don’t feel that this is the only property available. 

Remember when one door closes another opens! Be patient the right home will come.

Book a Property Inspection

Ready to ensure your dream home is a solid investment? Schedule a professional property inspection with Clearview today. Call 02 8329 7997 to secure your booking.

For inquiries, drop us an email at [email protected].

Our doors are open from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm, Monday to Friday, exclusively by appointment.

We proudly serve all areas of Sydney and the Central Coast, NSW.