The Pre-Sale Division provides inspections for single and two-family dwellings prior to selling. This assures the “new home owner” that the house meets livability standards. The inspections follow a set of guidelines, which you can obtain, on the 4th floor of the Coleman A. Young Municipal Center (Buildings, Safety Engineering and Environmental Department).

Note: As of September 17, 2014 the requirement for a pre-sale inspection has been repealed by City Council.  While the repeal is pending enactment, BSEED has suspended the requirement to obtain the inspection. 

Beginning November 17, 2014, Detroit homeowners will no longer be required to obtain a City of Detroit housing inspection (“pre-sale” inspection) before selling a one- or two-family dwelling. The Detroit City Council recently repealed the pre-sale ordinance as requested by the Buildings, Safety Engineering and Environmental Department (BSEED).  While the repeal is pending enactment, BSEED has suspended the requirement to obtain the inspection.

 The repeal is in line with a number of other large U.S. cities that have eliminated pre-sale inspections and will allow BSEED to redeploy employees to focus on addressing blight and inspections of rental properties. Under the ordinance, sellers of one- or two-family dwellings were required to obtain a City inspection, make any noted repairs or corrections, and obtain a Certificate of Approval upon passing inspection. However, buyers could opt to accept responsibility for making the required repairs and obtaining the Certificate of Approval prior to occupancy. The City’s pre-sale inspection was originally enacted in 1976 to inspect for “minimal health and safety standards”.

 "Many Detroit homeowners and homebuyers already purchase private inspections in addition to the City’s pre-sale inspection," said Eric Jones, BSEED Director. "In the future the City will no longer require its own inspection, but will provide it upon request only." 

 Although the City is dropping the pre-sale requirement, Jones is encouraging individuals to arrange for a private, more comprehensive inspection to assess the property’s condition and protect their potential investments.

 Pre-sale inspections that are performed by BSEED after the repeal date will be provided for informational purposes only. However, the City will continue to enforce on other types of violations found at the property in the course of the inspection, such as work performed without a necessary permit, or serious health or safety violations.  These situations will be required to be addressed by the homeowner, re-inspected, and approved by the Department.  A customer who has already requested or obtained a pre-sale inspection will be entitled to receive a second inspection to verify the status of repairs performed and obtain a Certificate of Approval, if appropriate.  

 For more information, contact (313) 224-3251