Possible to rengotiate price after building inspection? Have you done it? Any tips?

Possible to renegotiate price after building inspection? Have you done it? Any tips?

Building inspection on a house I am buying has come back advising replacement of 1.5 - 2m retaining wall along full length of property. Additionally there are verandah rails that aren't of an approved construction as well as another repair that would amount to total of maybe $10K+(guesstimate on my part). Contract was signed off on at what I considered a good/reasonable price for the house but with expectations of only cosmetic repairs being needed.

Would you try and renegotiate price? Anyone been successful doing this?
Any tips on how you would approach it, and whether I should go to the agent first or just put it in writing from the solicitor would be appreciated.

Additionally, there have been termites in the property very recently, possibly/probably caught in the early stages but pest inspection will clarify that soon.

Experienced negotiators opinions especially welcome!

ps seller had their previous contract fall over......
 
we went back when found termite damage (not active).
We asked to either replace the damaged areas or pay us equivalent. They replaced timbers. I think you'll need a quote or two from builders.

Pen
 
Hey Wishlist,
Not been in the same position, and not a lawyer. Trying to answer with common sense, rather than experience or legal expertise!

BUT, if you have a contract with a "subject to satisfactory building inspection" clause, then you should have the right to cancel your existing contract. Then what's stopping you putting in a new contract (new price) without the BI clause?

2c
 
We did this with our 2nd property......days before settlement one of the side fences fell over. Neighbour was landscaping his garden and had removed the tree holding the whole thing up (unbeknownst to us). We were informed the owners had been sent several intent to fence notices, and the day after we signed the contracts had contacted the neighbour and told him to take it up with the new owners.

I got straight onto my conveyencor who did the negotiations with the owners to deduct their share of the fence from our costs at settlement. Owner reluctantly agreed to a reduced price, but only after we threatened to pull out of the sale.

Also, buying another property, found out the roof was flaking with asbestos, so renegotiated the cost of the roof replacement etc. That sale fell through in the end, think it failed the building inspection for ohter reasons and we used that to pull out of the sale.
 
I would definately try and negotiate - this is afterall why we put in those clauses. ;)

I bought a house subject to pest inspection. House came back clear but had termite activity in a tree stump in the garden. I re-negotiated the price for the cost of termite treatment, which I was planning to spend money on anyhow as it is in a termite prone area and I wanted to protect the property. So I actually came out ahead when the vendor agreed to reduce the price by the cost of the treatment. :)
 
It is interesting to see that it has been possible to renegotiate when the fault wasn't a problem related to the structure of the house.

In trying to achieve the best outcome, would it be better to get onto the agent first and let them know how I am likely to proceed, or have the solicitor put it in writing first?
 
In trying to achieve the best outcome, would it be better to get onto the agent first and let them know how I am likely to proceed, or have the solicitor put it in writing first?

I just went back to the agent - put in writing what I wanted. They wanted to see a copy of the termite inspection report and agreed to what I asked for. Contracts were altered and that was it. Was pretty straight forward for me, some people panic at the word termite (I used to be one of them), and don't realise just how common they are.
 
100% re negotiate.

The way i approach it would be to go to the agent and say there has been 10k worth of major defects found either reduce the price by 10k or the owner can fix the problem...leave the ball in there court but insist one of the above must happen.
(also keep your solicitor informed)

Depending on the purchase price 10k worth of reductions shouldn't be hard to achieve.
 
Does the wording of the building inspection have provisions to renegotiate the price should major defects be found? I would have thought that it would only give you the right to collapse the contract.

Boods
 
I got an independent builder to come around and quote me on all the work required, approx $7500. Because there was a long settlement period and the house was vacant, I asked them to consider doing all the work themselves and I would pay the same contracted price. They countered me with, you do the work and we will reduce the negotiated price by $15,000. Worked for me - and the work ended up costing less than first thought. Happy Days
 
Boods99, the wording doesn't specifically give provision to renegotiate. However, if both parties agree then that can be worked out between the solicitors.
Several successful changes to contract have happened here it seems.

.... I asked them to consider doing all the work themselves and I would pay the same contracted price. They countered me with, you do the work and we will reduce the negotiated price by $15,000. Worked for me - and the work ended up costing less than first thought. Happy Days

Good that the vendor countered with the reduced price. Nice approach.

Expect I will speak to the agent with facts and figures in hand, and then follow up from the solicitor and see how it all pans out. With a fair amount of work to be done I am ambivalent now about the purchase - probably a good position to be in when bargaining.

Thanks all for outlining your various approaches.
 
Pre-Purchase Inspections

Hi

A pre-purchase building inspector is looking for major defects, minor defects that can lead to a major defects and safety issues. Items like retaining walls and fences that are dilapidated are usually safety hazards. These can be used to pull out of your contract. You can alternatively get quotes to have these items repaired. Then negotiate the costs of these off your purchase price. You should remember that if the property owner does not want to re-negotiate with you and you pull out of your contract. The next purchaser will also be finding these faults. As a word of advice, do the repairs yourself then you can select licenced and qualified people to the do the repair work and it will be in your name should you have probelms with the work in the future. If the owner does the work any guarantees usually go with them as they are the client on the invoices, usually guarantees don't transfer from one owner to another. Most of the population in SE queensland are aware that a building & pest report will be done on their property if they are selling. Don't let the current owners problems become your problems by not attending to them before you settle! I am an owner of Allied Home Home inspectors with my husband Peter (builder) and we deal with these situations everyday and this is the advice we give our clients.
 
Hi

As a word of advice, do the repairs yourself then you can select licenced and qualified people to the do the repair work and it will be in your name should you have probelms with the work in the future. If the owner does the work any guarantees usually go with them as they are the client on the invoices, usually guarantees don't transfer from one owner to another.

Excellent point.
 
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