Whether or not you’re selling your home, you have certain rights as a property owner. These laws may vary by state, but generally, anyone coming onto your property without your permission could be considered a trespasser, in accordance with your local statutes. If a potential buyer (or an inspector hired by the buyer) wants to stop by and take a peek at your roof or anything else, a written approval from the seller is required. Inspecting the house for purchase, formal inspections, and the steps for a resolution to those inspections should always be in writing. And all parties should have committed to and agreed to the inspections and their resolutions. The formality of inspections varies by state, but sellers have the right to approve or deny any inspection requests and resolutions to inspections.
Paul Ryll, a residential appraiser and co-founder of Oscar Mike Mobile Appraisals, won’t go anywhere near a property without permission. “By law, I am not allowed on the subject’s property without the owner of record’s permission, regardless of the type of appraisal assignment or who my client may be,” says Ryll. Appraisers and inspectors are responsible for confirming they have permission to be at a house—whether inside or out—with the homeowner.
A dual agent is an agent that represents both the seller and the buyer in the same real estate transaction. In such a transaction, there may be concern about the dual agent representing both sides fairly. Could the dual agent send the buyer or an inspector to the house without the seller’s approval? The answer is no. A dual agent must follow the rules that govern home inspections. Having a dual agent has no bearing in this case as we all have to abide by the law. It’s always unlawful to enter a property without the property owner’s permission. If an inspector shows up on your doorstep with your agent—and you didn’t give the agent permission—it’s time to revisit your dual agency agreement. If you feel as though you are not receiving fiduciary care from your agent, you can always seek out help from your agent’s broker or the local real estate commission.