Does a House Need to Pass Inspection to Be Sold in Tennessee?

When it comes to buying or selling a house, inspections play a crucial role in ensuring the transaction is fair and transparent. However, there are common misconceptions about whether a house needs to pass inspection in order to be sold in Tennessee.

Whether you are a buyer or a seller, understanding the role of inspections in the house-selling process is essential when you want to sell your house as-is in Tennessee.

What Is a Home Sale Inspection in Tennessee?

In Tennessee, a home sale inspection is a thorough examination of a property conducted by a licensed home inspector. The purpose of the inspection is to assess the condition of the property and identify any major issues or repairs that may need attention. This inspection is typically requested by the buyer as part of the due diligence process before finalizing the purchase of a home.

The home inspection process in Tennessee usually involves a visual examination of the property's structure, systems, and components. The inspector will inspect the roof, foundation, electrical systems, plumbing, HVAC, and other important aspects of the house. The inspection may also include testing for radon, mold, or other environmental hazards.

How Does a Home Inspection Work When Selling a House?

When selling a house, it is important to understand how the home inspection process works. Once a buyer makes an offer on your property, they may include an inspection contingency in the purchase agreement. This contingency allows the buyer to hire a licensed home inspector to evaluate the property within a specified timeframe. Here’s what it looks like:

  • Walkthrough with Buyer: The buyer typically accompanies the inspector during the inspection, providing an opportunity to discuss findings firsthand.
  • Exterior Inspection: Evaluate the condition of the roof, siding, foundation, landscaping, and other exterior elements.
  • Interior Inspection: Assess the structural components, plumbing, electrical systems, HVAC, and other internal features.
  • Inspection Report: A comprehensive inspection report is generated, typically including photos and detailed descriptions of any problems.

Based on the inspection report, the buyer may negotiate repairs or a price reduction with the seller. The seller can choose to address identified issues, negotiate, or decline requested changes based on the inspection findings. Once negotiations are complete, the necessary repairs are made or the agreed-upon adjustments are factored into the closing process.

What Is the Purpose of Home Inspections in Real Estate Sales?

Home inspections benefit both the buyer and the seller in a real estate transaction. For the buyer, an inspection provides valuable information about the condition of the property they are considering purchasing. It helps them make an informed decision and potentially negotiate repairs or a lower price if significant issues are found.

As the seller, a home inspection can be advantageous as well. By having a pre-listing inspection done, you can identify any major issues or repairs beforehand and address them proactively. This can help attract potential buyers and streamline the negotiation process. Additionally, a clean inspection report can give buyers confidence in the property and potentially lead to a quicker sale.

Does My House Have to Pass Inspection to Be Sold?

Contrary to popular belief, there are no specific Tennessee laws that enforce a passed inspection before a house can be sold. Inspections are not meant to determine whether a house "passes" or "fails" but rather to provide information to buyers about the property's condition. It is up to the buyer and seller to negotiate repairs or resolve any issues that may arise from the inspection.

It is important to understand the difference between inspections for information and compliance.

  • Information: Inspections for information are conducted to inform the buyer about the condition of the property.
  • Compliance: On the other hand, compliance inspections are required by certain entities, such as lenders or insurance companies, to ensure the property meets specific standards.

Compliance inspections are not mandatory for selling a house in Tennessee, but they may be necessary for obtaining financing or insurance.

Am I Legally Required to Disclose Issues With the Property in Tennessee?

In Tennessee, sellers are legally required to disclose any known material defects or issues with the property. Material defects are problems that could affect the value, safety, or habitability of the property. Failure to disclose such issues can lead to legal consequences and potential lawsuits. It is essential to familiarize yourself with the specific laws and regulations regarding property disclosure in Tennessee.

The Tennessee Residential Property Condition Disclosure Act outlines the requirements for sellers to provide a written disclosure statement to potential buyers. This statement must include information about the property's physical condition, known defects, and any major repairs or renovations that have been done.

What Property Issues Do I Need to Disclose?

When selling a house in Tennessee, there are several property issues that you need to disclose to potential buyers. Some of these issues include:

  • Structural problems, such as foundation issues or roof leaks
  • Plumbing or electrical issues
  • Pest infestations, such as termites or rodents
  • Water damage or mold
  • Environmental hazards, such as lead-based paint or asbestos
  • Previous repairs or renovations that may have been done without permits

It is crucial to disclose any known issues, even if they have been repaired or resolved. Providing accurate and transparent information about the property's condition is not only a legal requirement but also builds trust between the buyer and seller.

What Are the Pros and Cons of Selling My House Without Inspections?

Selling a house without inspections can have both advantages and disadvantages. Here are some pros and cons to consider:


  • Faster sale: By selling the house as-is, you can avoid the time-consuming process of negotiating repairs or waiting for inspection reports.
  • Less stress: Without inspections, you don't have to worry about potential buyers uncovering major issues that could derail the sale.
  • Greater control: Selling without inspections allows you to maintain control over the sale process and make decisions on your own terms.


  • Limited buyer pool: Some buyers may be hesitant to purchase a house without an inspection, particularly if they are concerned about potential hidden problems.
  • Lower offers: Without inspection reports to assure buyers of the property's condition, they may submit lower offers to account for potential risks.
  • Potential liability: Selling the house without inspections may expose you to legal risks if undisclosed issues arise after the sale.

Sell Your House As-Is With a Cash Home Sale

If you want to avoid inspections altogether, one option is to sell your house as-is through a cash home sale. A cash home sale is a type of transaction where a buyer purchases the property with cash, without the need for financing or inspections. This can be an attractive option for sellers who want a quick and hassle-free sale.

In a cash home sale, the buyer assumes responsibility for inspections and repairs after the sale. This means that you, as the seller, can sell the house without worrying about potential repairs or negotiations. The buyer will be aware that they are purchasing the property in its current condition, and any necessary repairs or renovations will be their responsibility.

Get Cash for My Home in Knoxville, Tennessee

If you need to sell your house fast but don’t want the hassle of a traditional home sale, contact New Porch Home Buyers. We buy houses as-is. No repairs are needed. Avoid closing costs and realtor commissions. Close in as little as seven days. Call (865) 234-9995 to get cash for your home from our local home buyers in Tennessee.