TOP TEN ways to get a Better Inspection

Home Inspector with WE Home Inspections, Inc. - Serving Oviedo & Central FL

Number 10:  Let the Inspector do his job.  I don't mean stand aside and not participate or ask questions.  I mean let the inspector do their routine.  I make most of my mistakes when people pull me over to "check this out" real quick.  Have your list of "can you take a look..." ready.  If the inspector does not cover the issue, ask about it when the routine is done.

Number Nine:  Have the potential buyer make a separate "check this out" list than you.  Do not even tell the buyer you have a list.  The more times fresh eyes observe a property, the more likely things will not be over-looked.

eight ballNumber Eight:  Talk to the neighbors to gather any history you can on the area and the house.  When was the last major storm?  Do you remember seeing regular service vehicles?  Did you ever see the old owners working/maintaining the house?  Share your intelligence gathering with the inspector.

Number Seven:  When you book the inspection, provide the inspector with your disclosure and information sheet.  Many times agents will guard this information as a litmus test for the inspector.  The fact is that most people will only disclose what they feel they must.  The clues that are in the disclosure will help the inspector perform a more comprehensive evaluation.

Number Six:  Encourage the seller to be somewhere else.  A proud owner can be a huge distraction to an inspector.  The chance of misdirection and omission is amplified by a chatty homeowner trying to be helpful.

Number Five:  Be aware and educated as to your regional concerns.  For example, in Central Florida, you counting fiveshould be concerned about roof construction for wind storms; aware of polybutylene in homes built in the 90's; and concerned about Federal Pacific Energy components (mains and circuit breakers) for any house built before the mid 70's.

Number Four:  Research the history of the house, its renovations, and particularly the builder.  Again, in Central Florida, there are a handful of builders that have earned special considerations by inspectors.  The latest builder trend includes walls and windows that do not withstand water.

Number Three:  Utilize your conversation skills on the seller.  Try and ascertain the type of maintenance that may have been performed on the house.  If the seller is a single traveling business person that was hardly at home, then you have two distinct possibilities.  The house will be maintained impeccably or not at all.

Number Two:  Have a set list of specific questions to ask the inspector at the end of the routine.  This is different than the "check this out" list.  This is a list that you will create, edit, and adjust on a regular basis.  You should ask the same questions at the end of every inspection.  They should include questions on typical service.  ie.  "When was the last time the septic was serviced?"  The inspector obviously will not know, but it will force the question of the owner or their agent.  It will also let you know if the inspector has considered that component.  Finally, it can be used as a simple test - especially if the property is on public sewer service.

Number One:  Regardless of state laws or requirements, be sure that your inspector is qualified through state licensing (if available) certifying organizations, and or accredited schooling.  NACHI certified means that the inspector has passed an industry standard NACHI Certtest on a yearly basis and continues education at a rate of 24 credit hours per year.  Other organizations exist - be sure they have national standards and continuing educational components and requirements.

Following these ideas will help you continue the premise of the Active Rain organization which is to provide collaborative, helpful, and positive information.  By doing so, you will also create the maximum disclosure that helps find the win/win situation you are looking for.

logoSteve Edmonds


Comments (4)

Ryan Shaughnessy
PREA Signature Realty - - Saint Louis, MO
Broker/Attorney - Your Lafayette Square Real Estate Partner

Good, solid advice on how to handle a property inspection.

May 15, 2009 06:46 PM
Gabe Sanders
Real Estate of Florida specializing in Martin County Residential Homes, Condos and Land Sales - Stuart, FL
Stuart Florida Real Estate

Thanks Steve, great points, some of which I really never considered.  I'll keep this for future use, thanks.

May 15, 2009 11:59 PM
Steve Edmonds
WE Home Inspections, Inc. - Serving Oviedo & Central FL - Oviedo, FL

Ryan and Gabe -

Thanks for the Kudos :).


LogoSteve Edmonds

May 16, 2009 02:33 AM
Not a real person
San Diego, CA

Very nice list, Steve. I really like #10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, and 1.

Happy New Year!

Jan 05, 2010 02:07 AM