Most home purchases in the Twin Cities area are subject to inspection, which means that the buyer can cancel the purchase agreement following the inspection and get earnest money refunded with no penalty. Most of the time buyers and sellers negotiate to cover items found during the inspection and move on to closing… but not always.
Below are your three options following your inspection. Be sure you understand the timeline requirements, the form has changed this year to now include calendar days (it used to EXCLUDE weekends and holidays) and give a deadline by which everything must be agreed upon or the purchase agreement simply moves forward.
1) Accept everything as is and move on to closing – don't feel that you wasted your money on an inspection if it doesn't turn up major issues, often the biggest value of a home inspection is getting to know your new home well, knowing what to look out for and planning ahead for maintenance and replacements
2) Negotiate with the seller to make repairs/replacements, or give you compensation to do repairs yourself - some repairs are pretty straightforward and it makes sense to have the seller do them, but some things are better to negotiate compensation so work can be done to buyer specifications and seller doesn't have to act as a mediator between the buyer and contractor
3) Cancel purchase agreement and have earnest money refunded to buyer – FYI, many brokers require 10 days from receipt of earnest money check before refund is issued to ensure funds have fully cleared
Never feel backed into a corner that you must move forward with your purchase after the inspection. If it doesn't feel right, this is the time to stop and cancel the agreement. There will be another house that does feel right for you.
Sharlene Hensrud, RE/MAX Results - Twin Cities Buyer's Agent