Did You Know… In California, there is NO requirement that a Home Inspector has to be licensed in any way, or certified in or by any organization. Just “hang a shingle out” and you are a Home Inspector. Pretty scary huh, considering the purchase of a home is the biggest investment most of us will ever make in our lifetime! Not to mention that we are counting on the home we do purchase to safely and comfortably house and protect our precious family.
Did You Know… In California, almost without exception, the Structural Pest (termite) Control companies have lost money the moment their inspector’s truck’s tailgate passes out through the business’s yard gate. This occurs because they basically give away the inspection in order to get their “foot in the door” to get the repair job and lucrative chemical treatments. If all that these companies did was inspections, and they were charging the ludicrously low fees they are charging, they all would go out of business almost immediately. Why do you think that you get such a hassle from them when you choose to do the work your self or hire a Contractor that is charging a far more reasonable amount for the repairs???
Did You Know… Most Home Inspectors try to do three or more Home Inspections in a single day! And, many real estate agents expect “short visits” at the property by the Home Inspector. Numerous agents have even told me that they will never “hire” a Home Inspector again if he/she spends more than 1 ½ hours making the inspection. Just how thorough and accurate do you think an inspection will be when made by one of these realtor-coveted inspectors, AND, just whose best interest is being served in the process???
Did You Know… Many Home Inspectors won’t climb up on and walk the roof. There may be a valid reason not to if it is unsafe (too steep a pitch, too slippery, may cause damage as in the case of a tile roof), but, most roofs don’t fall under those categories. The roof is one of the most important systems of the home. If the roof is not in serviceable condition and leaks, every thing below is subject to damage. If the roof is not walked/inspected, what good is the Home Inspection???
Did You Know… Many Home Inspectors won’t crawl the sub area (under floor area) of a home, or, they charge extra to do so. What information value does a Home Inspection have if the sub area is not crawled and inspected, as that is where a lot of plumbing, structural framing and foundation components are located not to mention pest and moisture issues.
Did You Know… In California, you have no idea what type format the Home Inspection report that you have ordered will be delivered in. As there are no licensing requirements, there is also no report format or other requirements. It could range any where from a hand written report on a scratch pad to a computer generated report that includes color digital pictures of any issues present. What type of report would you have confidence in???
Did You Know… Some Structural Pest (termite) Control companies expect their inspectors to perform three or more inspections in a single day. With the variety of home styles, sizes, travel times to the property, conditions present and other factors, this practice just doesn’t make much sense, nor does it promote any kind of fair, accurate inspection report that you, the consumer, is expecting and deserving. If you are relying on one of these inspections, just how comfortable are you going to feel in the reports contents? Is this a report that will offer the information you wanted and thought you paid for, or is it self-serving for the company performing the inspection and the AGENT THAT ORDERED IT FOR YOU???
Did You Know… If you encounter a realtor that either insists on a certain inspector, or has a list of three “preferred” inspectors, or, worse yet, insists that you not hire a certain inspector, ALL OF THE ALARM BELLS in your head should start going off. It is at that point that you need to insist that YOU WILL hire the inspector of YOUR choice. Get on line, ask people for referrals, interview the inspectors and ask the hard questions such as credentials that make them qualified as true experienced Home Inspectors. Do what ever it takes to find the inspector of YOUR choice that will protect YOUR interests, not others selfish interests.
Did You Know… Beware of the Home Inspector that offers cost estimates for repair of issues brought out in his/her inspection report. First, one of the only laws in California regarding Home Inspectors is a requirement that the Home Inspector can NOT perform any kind of repair work on a home that he/she has made an inspection of for at least a period of one year after the inspection. Second, simple common sense tells you that no one person can be 100% (or even close to 50%) up on all current codes, methods, materials and costs involved with the repair of any and all of the multitude systems that make up even the most simple of homes. If you fall for that scenario you are bound to lose money!
Did You Know… Some Structural Pest (termite) Control companies pay their inspector’s straight commission on actual work performed and completed ONLY! Ever wonder why “termite” inspection reports are so vague, confusing and use language that is hard to understand? Ever wonder why the “inspector” has all the time in the world to “help” you sign the work agreement contract but no time to explain to you what repairs need to be done and how to do them? Yeah, I’ve wondered about that too!
Did You Know… Beware of the biggest scam ever foisted on the homebuyer — the “sectioned” Structural Pest (termite) inspection. Yes, that’s right… back in the 1970’s the real estate industry lobbied hard to get the California Structural Pest Control Board and the Structural Pest industry to accept the “sectioning” of termite reports. I don’t remember the actual date, but in the late 70’s the sectioned report style was finally “shoved down the throat” of the California Structural Pest (termite) industry. Basically it works like this in most “usual” home sales, but, it can vary: Section I items in a “termite” report are usually the owner/sellers responsibility to repair, and, the buyer assumes responsibility and/or accepts all Section II items. BUT WAIT, there is a third “kicker”!!!!! UNKNOWNS… or, FURTHER INSPECTION areas/items. The buyer that is not savvy enough to pick them out of the termite report mumbo jumbo and require further information about those areas just “sort of” assumes whatever conditions are present in these uninspected, inaccessible areas. An example of a Section I issue could be a leaky ceramic tile stall shower that has caused dry rot fungus wood damage to the floor supporting the stall shower. This could be a very expensive repair, many thousands of dollars depending on the situations present. This repair item would be the sellers’ responsibility in most cases, or negotiated between the seller and the buyer. Now an example of a Section II issue: The very same leaky ceramic tile stall shower, but a few months or year or so earlier when no fungus or dry rot is present or visible on the floor wood framing members as yet. Yep, it’s a Section II because there is NO EVIDENCE of an “active infestation or infection” at the time of the inspection. The fact that there is no fungus/dry rot present on the floor framing today doesn’t mean that there almost certainly won’t be tomorrow from the constant leakage on the wood floor framing members as the shower is used! The cost to repair the issue is basically the same whether it is a Section I or II, but the responsibility of the repair has been successfully pushed off onto the unsuspecting buyer through contractual verbiage cleverly crafted in the onerous 10 to 12 page purchase agreement contract that the MLS and realtors use. It’s a great world we live in… all I have to say is to read and understand what you are signing, but, most of all, seek out and deal with true professionals that have your best interest at heart and are not just worried about closing escrow and/or making a quick, easy buck.