We don’t need to get it inspected before, that’s the buyers expense, right?

We don’t need to get it inspected before, that’s the buyers expense, right?

Well ……. consider this;

You have to have it tested, you can’t prove it, you can only say you suspect it, unless…….. it’s labeled

But there it was;

Pipe insulation

Yes it’s labeled. This is rare,….SO rare… I never ever expected to see it.

Here it is, the photo flipped over so you can read the label;

Asbestos tag

Even though part of the label is missing it’s very clear what it says and is repeated in the red area of the tag.

This home was a 1920’s construction, very solid and very well built. At the time of it’s installation this fireproof pipe insulation was one of the good guys. It was state of the art and the best you could buy, the best you could have, period.

So naturally, this is not rare in that neighbourhood and is commonly dealt with now by removal by a properly trained contractors. In this home it was all easily accessible and could be removed from this unoccupied dwelling fairly easily.

However, this became one of the ‘issues’ for an otherwise marvellous, excellent house in a very desirable neighbourhood.

Because this and a few other details were a surprise to the buyers this transaction is at risk of collapsing. Both agents worked hard to get this deal to work, and to save it they will now have an uphill battle.

Sadly this could have been avoided. Had there been a sellers or pre-listing inspection this ‘surprise’ could all have been avoided.

This sale had gotten to the point of the buyers inspection that I performed, after many negotiations and counter offers. The price ended up lower than the ask and the buyers had budgeted for certain renos in addition to the purchase price.

So it was a tight, fragile situation before the buyers inspection report provided any information on the physical conditions.

Had the sellers or the agent known the facts before listing it would be an easy matter to price repairs, factor it into the pricing and proceed with confidence.

Even when repairs are not done, simply declaring or making the information available to buyers prior to receiving offers means that there are no surprises when a later inspection is done.

No surprises means no upsets, so if you, or people you know, are planning to or are trying to sell a home, they can be proactive and have a pre-listing inspection done.

The idea that an inspection “is the buyers expense” should be re-thought. It’s a false economy and causes a lot of stress.

What do you think the sellers and agents trying to salvage this sale would say today?

N.B. Asbestos fiber dust has been identified as a known carcinogen. It’s considered hazardous only when inhaled. You can and probably have held it or products containing it in your hands, quite safely. It’s removal requires specific protocols and procedures that control and limit the creation and spread of dust and asbestos containing materials and ensure that all products have been completely removed with out residue remnants. Normally at the end of the process an air quality test is done to verify that removal has been successful.


Original blog post on ActiveRain: Link to Blog Post