"Oh, They Didn't Need You. The County Did The Inspection"

By
Home Inspector with Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC 3380-000723
https://activerain.com/droplet/4wT

How do I approach this post?

Unbelievably I was called and scheduled to inspect this house

When I had looked at it previously I did not know the Flipper, but I did know, from reading the sign, that the house had been purchased by and was being remodeled by one of the local Counties.  It was then to be "sold" to some family unable to purchase it without some form of assistance.  What disgusted me when I saw it previously was that the Flipper was an unbelievable con artist and that some poor soul was to live in that house.

It turns out that "poor soul" was going to be my client and I was chomping at the bit to inspect this place!!

Not knowing exactly when it was to be finished, the Realtor asked me to wait for a call to confirm the date.

THE CALL NEVER CAME.  And being busy with scheduled inspections, I forgot about it.

Then yesterday the same Realtor called to schedule something different.  Remembering this house, I had to ask about it!

"Oh, they didn't need you.  The County did the inspection."

This is coming from a Realtor!  I couldn't believe it!!  "The County doesn't employ home inspectors.  Who did the inspection?"

"The contractor who did the work.  He walked them around showing them everything he did.  The house looked beautiful!  They were real happy.  They are in it now.  Since the inspection was FREE, we didn't need to call you."

Aggghhh!  I have to say, my heart sank! 

Here is a couple who CLEARLY doesn't know what they don't know.  And they have bought a house!

And they are getting and accepting very bad advice from many sources!

  • They can't afford a house without assistance.
  • They have put their trust in the County, their Realtor and this schmuck contractor.
  • They have "bought" a house that was so unsafe outside, this home inspector was AFRAID to go inside!
  • They think all home inspections are the same, that a walk through is a home inspection and that it is FREE, so it must be a good deal!
  • They are so strapped they can't afford a home inspection.  Then they CERTAINLY can't afford future repairs.  And there will be future repairs!!
  • THIS is the crux of the sub-prime problem.  We are still in it.

I have to say, honestly, that Mr. Jay is really, really, really tempted to send her a link to his blog about this house, but probably won't.  No point in stirring that pot.  I think the house will stir it soon enough!

My recommendation:  if you ever, ever, ever feel like a home does not need a home inspection, ESPECIALLY if it was remodeled by a Flipper or "the County," call me so I can gently, quietly and politely PILE DRIVE SOME SENSE INTO YOUR HEAD!

OH, AND NOTHING IS ... FREE!

 

 

Posted by

Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC  

Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.

Office (703) 330-6388   Cell (703) 585-7560

www.jaymarinspect.com


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Re-Blogged 11 times:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Glenn Roberts 01/26/2011 12:26 AM
  2. Karen Kruschka 01/26/2011 07:10 AM
  3. Joanne Gillet &The Edge Of The Beach Team ---- Pawleys Island, SC 01/27/2011 03:18 AM
  4. Erby Crofutt 01/27/2011 04:23 AM
  5. Nettie Carnett - Kennedy 01/27/2011 06:50 AM
  6. Debbie Durkee 01/27/2011 07:32 AM
  7. Tony and Suzanne Marriott, Associate Brokers 01/27/2011 11:34 AM
  8. Dawn Crawley 01/27/2011 11:45 AM
  9. Cindy Jones 01/30/2011 12:29 AM
  10. Chris Smith 02/01/2011 01:06 AM
  11. Lydie Ouellet Dickinson 02/02/2011 05:52 AM
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2,074,804
Barbara-Jo Roberts Berberi, MA, PSA, TRC - Greater Clearwater Florida Residential Real Estate Professional
Charles Rutenberg Realty - Clearwater, FL
Palm Harbor, Dunedin, Clearwater, Safety Harbor
Again, you have to wonder what some people are even thinking! Purchasing and NOT having your OWN home inspector?????
Feb 02, 2011 12:37 AM #200
Rainmaker
1,811,047
Jay Markanich
Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC - Bristow, VA
Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia

Chris - for some reason your responses to my blogs did not come through until today!  And thanks for stopping by so many!  And again, thanks for the reblog.

Barbara-Jo - it baffled me.  I am a little afraid to bring this up with that realtor as I don't want to open a can of worms!

Feb 02, 2011 07:09 AM #201
Rainer
138,818
Paul Silver
Tiverton, RI
Rhode Island full service real estate firm

What are these people thinking... ??? So htey have the guy who rehabbed the property do the inspection because it was "free"? We shall see how free it was once they move in and find all the crap that the builder did not remember to mention...


We ALWAYS use qualified inspectors, even on new construction, for the well being of our clients... there is simply no excuse not to do so...

Feb 03, 2011 03:02 AM #202
Rainmaker
1,811,047
Jay Markanich
Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC - Bristow, VA
Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia

Paul - you have that exactly right!  I worry for them and the things that will crop up over time.  But it's way out of my hands!

Feb 03, 2011 09:47 AM #203
Rainmaker
69,153
Vince Santos
StepByStep Home Services LC - Canton, MI
Southeast Michigan Home Inspector

Had someone call me last week to see if I would just inspect the roof/attic. She said the full inspection wasn't needed because the city already inspected it. I've heard that several times and always take the opportunity to explain the difference. Sometime my point is well taken and other times, as was this time, it's brushed away and the buyer moves forward without a complete inspection.

Feb 07, 2011 10:34 AM #205
Rainmaker
1,811,047
Jay Markanich
Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC - Bristow, VA
Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia

Hey Vince!  I worry about these "partial" inspections because I always notice something else and if I mention it I wonder if I'm not opening myself up to a later claim, "Your SOP's say you are supposed to do this and that!  And while I hired you to look at the roof you should have mentioned the other stuff!"

It's always someone else's fault!

Feb 07, 2011 10:37 PM #206
Rainer
20,494
Evelyn Black
Comey & Shepherd, Cincinnati, OH - Cincinnati, OH

Great post - agree with others' comments about poor buyers & stupid agent!!  I ALWAYS highly recommend a home inspection!

Feb 11, 2011 09:05 AM #207
Rainmaker
1,811,047
Jay Markanich
Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC - Bristow, VA
Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia

Good for you Evelyn.  I feel badly for these people, but it isn't my issue now!

Feb 11, 2011 11:04 AM #208
Rainer
115,711
Eldon Hendrix
Hendrix and sons Home Inspections - Holiday, FL

It's amazing how everyone is an expert when it comes to giving out information about a profession in which we have to have continued training.  Clients don't realize that the inspection is to protect their interests, not be just another expense that could be cut to save a few dollars.  Have a great week Jay.

Eldon

Mar 12, 2011 09:37 AM #209
Rainmaker
1,811,047
Jay Markanich
Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC - Bristow, VA
Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia

Thanks for stopping by again Eldon!  You are right.  I don't think the public knows just how much time and money we spend annually to stay current and informed.

Mar 12, 2011 09:45 AM #210
Rainer
90,609
Maya Swamy
Funds Available - Long Beach, CA
Ph.D. Long Beach, CA - fundsavailable.com

Hi Jay,

I have a question that comes out of ignorance. It is clear that safety was significantly compromised in the way the property was fixed up. What I was wondering was if you hadn't seen the work in progress how much this would you have been able to determine in an inspection. That is how much could you have identified after the flipper has hidden everything with siding.

Apr 09, 2011 08:44 AM #211
Rainer
17,030
Kieno Simeon Your South Riding Real Estate Consultant
Keller Williams Realty - South Riding, VA

Jay, I read your initial post and then when I saw this one I was so interested to see that you were able to tear this house to shreds and save a buyer from inheriting a headache.  When I saw that you were unable to inspect the home and the buyers had already settled, my heart sank for these new homeowners. 

But you certainly said it best when you said this " if you ever, ever, ever feel like a home does not need a home inspection, ESPECIALLY if it was remodeled by a Flipper or "the County," call me so I can gently, quietly and politely PILE DRIVE SOME SENSE INTO YOUR HEAD!"  I've heard some home inspectors referred to as "deal killers".  Give me a home inspector like that any day so my client can be as well informed as possible!  Better for them to know now than to be blindsided later on!

Apr 09, 2011 12:25 PM #212
Rainmaker
499,838
Robert L. Brown
www.mrbrownsellsgr.com - Grand Rapids, MI
Grand Rapids Real Estate Bellabay Realty, West Mic

I like that phrase" pile drive some sense in your head". Some buyers really need it. Some are thinking they will SAVE the money but in the end it'll cost them 10 times as much.

Apr 09, 2011 12:48 PM #213
Rainmaker
1,811,047
Jay Markanich
Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC - Bristow, VA
Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia

Maya - because I have tools, such as a thermal imaging camera, which can detect spots in walls that are not insulated or sealed properly and I had lots of photographs!  I also have some tricks up my sleeve to check electrical and plumbing.  In this case I would have known what to look for.

Kieno - my heart also sank when the realtor said they didn't "need" a home inspection!  I don't think I have ever killed a deal.  Many houses have though!

Robert - that certainly would have been true in this case.  I don't know when it will all hit the fan for those people, but it will one day!

Apr 09, 2011 01:18 PM #214
Rainmaker
135,600
Paul Francis
Francis Group Real Estate - Las Vegas, NV
Las Vegas Real Estate Agent - Summerlin Homes

Years ago I bought a Historic home where the owners "had done a lot of work" on it...

The Home Inspector found several issues with the home.... and after still buying it because it was a unique historic property in a highly desirable neighborhood that I was going to gut anyways...  I found even more...

Luckily I had the tolerance and money to correct the shoddy work (and I was expecting it anyways) but obviously these people will have NO money to fix those hidden defects.

Ya know... I hate to say it .... but because this agent told them that the County doing the Inspection equates to a clean bill of health...

I would have to send the happy new owners an offer to do a complimentary home inspection.

If they take you up on it, it might rain on their parade but I think in the long run they would be very happy to know that they just bought a Money Pit.

Something can still be done about it... probably not a couple of years down the road. The defects you describe are not going to be showing up anytime soon.

And if they have children... and I was in your shoes knowing what you know about the house... I don't know if I would be able to sleep at night.

Just my thoughts...

 

 

 

Apr 10, 2011 07:07 PM #215
Rainmaker
1,811,047
Jay Markanich
Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC - Bristow, VA
Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia

Unfortunately, Paul, all the counties around here are "remodeling" houses and selling them to people all the time.  I had another where all the plumbing done in the house was backwards.  That one is still in the process of getting "fixed," because nobody wants to take responsibility and the "plumber" is no longer in business.

The follow-ups on that one house has taken hours of my time.  I was the inspector there and feel to help.  I had nothing to do with the house in this blog and don't feel it my purview to get involved.  But I can sleep at night!

Apr 10, 2011 08:41 PM #216
Rainer
135,626
Matt Robinson
Professional Investors Guild - Pensacola, FL
www.professionalinvestorsguild.com

Jay, I'm with you 100%.  We have the same issue a lot here in regards to septic inspections.  The county requires that they inspect it, for a fee of $150, but they don't even open the tank.  They just go out and prod around a few spots, and only point out very OBVIOUS problems.  I tell my clients all the time that they need to insist that the seller pump it out and have the interior inspected by a licensed septic contractor.  Never rely on a local government agency to do ANYTHING right! 

Sep 07, 2011 06:24 AM #217
Rainmaker
1,811,047
Jay Markanich
Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC - Bristow, VA
Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia

Matt - the counties do the same septic "inspection" here too.  They walk around and if there are no puddles or odors, they pronouce it all fit!

Sep 07, 2011 10:20 AM #218
Rainmaker
68,081
Greg Wayman
Foundation-2-Rooftop, Inc. - Omaha, NE
ASHI Certified Inspector - 402-330-1701

Excellent post Jay!  Last week, I had the pleasure of inspecting a house that was remodeled by the City.  The Contractor in charge of the work is a licensed HVAC Contractor.  This home was supposed to be turn-key ready and already inspected by the City.

 

The 6 month old A/C didn't work.  I found a ton of electrical problems that were basic to find.  Here's the worst part: The 6 month old furnace was pumping 29 ppm of carbon monoxide into the home after only running for 5-6 minutes.  The readings kept going up, so I turned it off and had to air the house out.  The Buyer had a 5 year old son.  Had they moved in and turned the furnace on for the first time, they very well may have died.

It's crazy out there!!!  Always get a real home inspection!  If you can't afford an inspection, then you shouldn't be buying a house.

Aug 08, 2016 03:47 AM #219
Rainmaker
1,811,047
Jay Markanich
Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC - Bristow, VA
Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia

You found and oldie but a goodie, Greg!  The longer I do this (in my 36th year now) the more I realize how crucial inspections are on every structure, new and old.

Aug 08, 2016 08:18 AM #220
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Jay Markanich

Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia
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