Stress, Inspections for Buyers & Sellers

Managing Real Estate Broker with Flexit Realty "Flexible Home Selling Solutions"

Stress, Inspections For Buyers & Sellers

There is a real push nationally for licensing inspection companies and inspectors.

Like any industry under the microscope some of the national organizations that offer certifications, continuing education and compliance standards based on national construction and building codes, have flourished.  It doesn't mean that all inspectors or companies abbide by these guidelines or care about the national building standards.  Some are simply in it for the money.Modern Furnace

Here is a perfect reason why this issue in gaining steam.  This week an inspector, (unlicensed, none required in Michigan), determined a furnace had a major CO2 leak.  The didn't. 

He put in writing that the CO2 readings were dangerously high.  He also scared the buyer so bad that the home was unsafe, the buyer nearly pulled out of the purchase contract.   The only thing that kept the buyer was my relationship with the buyer's agent over the years.  I told the buyer's agent we would have the furnace professionally inspected and if the furnace was an issue we would repair or replace.  No responsible home owner wants to jeopardize their loved ones either.

 I immediately shared the outcome with the seller  concerning the inspection and contacted a licensed heating and cooling contractor to evaluate the furnace (which both the buyer and seller agreed upon).  I have had 10 furnaces reported as bad and not one has been bad.  That does not mean you should ignore the findings of an inspection of an inspector BUT, confirm any findings that are technical in nature.

Home Inspections with the Right ToolsThis same inspector has misdiagnosed two furnaces on my listings in 3 weeks.  This time I sent him the findings including the last one that was cleared for the same problem.

The stress the seller felt was immense, he wasn't sure he could keep his family in the house.  The buyer was so skeptical of the furnace because the report stated "elevated CO2 levels, dangerous CHECK immediately.

Here is the bottom line...the inspector didn't know the level required by federal guidelines and quoted the wrong number.  That is bazaar in itself.  He didn't have the right equipment to do the test properly and lastly wasn't licensed or trained to evaluate the furnace to the depth he was willing to report.  Over stepping your area of expertise whether a Realtor or other professional can cause you some serious harm in reputation and monetarily, should you be sued.

The seller has mailed the inspectorFlexit Realty Logo, his $130.00 invoice to be reimbursed.  I wonder how that will be handled?

Gary White

Live in Grand Rapids or West Michigan area, not under contract?  Like to sell or buy a home....give me a call.  It could save you thousands in your next real estate transaction.  Always confidential, Never Pressured.

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Comments (2)

Betina Foreman
WJK Realty - Austin, TX
Realtor, C.N.E., with WJK REALTY

A great inspector is worth their weight in gold. They can make you or break you in this biz. Great post Gary!!



Oct 27, 2009 07:21 AM
Russel Ray, San Diego Business & Marketing Consultant & Photographer
Russel Ray - San Diego State University, CA

I don't do carbon monoxide tests because they can vary at any time. Such might be the case in this situation. Rather, since our local utility recommends having gas-using appliances inspected annually, and I cannot summarily dismiss the recommendations of a public utility, I do my inspection but still tell my Clients that if it cannot be proven that the furnace has been inspected by a licensed heating and cooling professional within the past 12 months, to have it done before close of escrow. Heating and cooling professionals usually shut down the utilities to the furnace and then dismantle it to inspect the heat exchanger, something that home inspectors don't do, unless they also happen to be licensed heating and cooling contractors.

Oct 27, 2009 03:00 PM