As an optional approach, he suggests having the foundation repaired and then proceeding to list the price at full market value.
What if I pay for these repairs and the buyers' home inspector deems the work to be inadequate?
What recourse would I have?
Answer: Your Realtor has made some excellent suggestions. Start by determining the actual extent of the problem and the cost of making adequate repairs.
This begins with an evaluation by a licensed structural engineer who can diagnose the foundation problem and prescribe the needed repairs.
A licensed general contractor can then bid on the job of implementing the engineer's recommendations. At that point you'll know whether it's worth proceeding with repairs.
If repairs seem viable, all work should be done with permits from the local building department and approved by the municipal inspector.
In that event you'll have the engineer's report, the contractor's warranty and the building department's approval to assure buyers. All of this documentation should be included with your disclosure statement.
On the other hand, if you elect to sell the property without making foundation repairs, the engineer's report and the contractor's bid can be included with the disclosure statement, and the price can be adjusted as your Realtor suggested to reflect the amount of the bid.
In that case you will have provided your buyers with accurate information regarding the condition of the property.
Regardless of which course you pursue, the buyer's home inspector will be preceded by a reliable engineering report.
Driveway Is Not What It's Cracked Up to Be
Q: Our concrete driveway was installed only 10 months ago, and already there is a crack more than 10 feet long. The contractor has suggested that we cut a quarter-inch-deep groove along the crack and fill it with cement.
This sounds like a hokey repair to us. We think the contractor should replace the entire driveway.
What do you suggest?
A: It is not easy to evaluate a crack without actually seeing it.
If the crack is a hairline only, 1/16 inch wide or less, that is typical for concrete driveways. A wider crack would be unusual for a relatively new installation.
Most driveway cracks can be prevented by using proper procedures before pouring the concrete. These include compaction of the soil, placement of an aggregate base (rock and gravel), installation of steel rebar or wire mesh as reinforcement, and expansion joints to accommodate stresses, ground movement and shrinkage.