How to find a Seattle Home Inspector---and avoid being mad at two inspectors---the benefits of doing your homework!

By
Home Inspector with Charles Buell Inspections Inc.
https://activerain.com/droplet/ltT

The other day I did a post about being consulted to sort out some differences of opinion about some insect damage in a house.

Clearing the clouds awayI said at that time that I don't mind helping out with these types of forensic questions---after all the truth is just the truth---and most of the time houses are not rocket science.

In that post I took issue with the way the inspector used the English language to describe their findings and how what they said fell short of what was necessary to provide the best information to their client---and actually ended up freaking them out as well as the seller.

One problem I have had with these calls for a "second opinion" is that what do I do if the information is actually worse than what the inspector called out?  Or what if, (as in this case) there was very little problem with what the other inspector called out but there was another larger bear that was not even reported on?

Now, the seller and the buyer get to be mad at two inspectors instead of one.

As an inspector I can't afford to pay too much attention to the story written by other inspectors---I simply have to tell the story the way I see it.  What anyone does with that story is up to the reader. 

This scenario is a reminder of just how difficult finding a good home inspector can be.

I do not envy the job that any home buyer has in finding a good home inspector. 

It is no small task.

Here is a partial list of some of the things that can be included in your quest to find a better than average home inspector:

1.  Ask your agent---this is a good starting point---really good agents will work with really good inspectors.

2.  Do they belong to a reputable Home Inspector Association that requires a proctored membership exam as well as continuing education.

3.  Do you have to jump through more than one hoop to contact them---i.e. is their phone number front and center?

4.  Do they have a "functional" website (not just a page with their name on it---nor a website that is so complicated it is useless)?

5.  Do they have a sample report on their website?  Read it---does it look like the kind of information you are looking for, at the level of detail you are looking for, and is it written in the English language? (I think that comparing sample reports is one of the best ways of evaluating and or comparing home inspectors.  You will get to see what you will end up with in written form.  You may also be able to get a sense of whether the person you talked to on the phone is "consistent with" the person that wrote the report?  If you get an answering service always ask to speak directly with the inspector---this initial conversation is very important.)

6.  Do they have a blog?  Read it---you will likely find out a great deal about the inspector, and what their relationship is to what they do.

7.  Ask friends that have had inspections done---but be careful with this one---look at the reports and keep in mind that your friends may not have done their homework.

After this, all I can say is do your homework---and for extra credit and better results---do your homework twice.


Charles Buell, Seattle Home Inspector

Posted by

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Seattle Home Inspector

 

The Human Rights Campaign   QR code for Charles Buell Inspections Inc  ASHI.org

 

WA State, Home Inspector Advisory Licensing Board

close

Re-Blogged 1 time:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Janice Roosevelt 10/17/2011 10:03 AM
Topic:
ActiveRain Community
Groups:
The Lounge at Active Rain
Dedicated Bloggers
"Whacked"!!!
Bananatude
WeBlog Anything (almost)!
Tags:
home inspections
home inspectors
choosing a home inspector

Post a Comment
Spam prevention
Spam prevention
Show All Comments
Ambassador
3,041,730
Paul S. Henderson, REALTOR®, CRS
RE/MAX Northwest. - Tacoma, WA
Tacoma Washington Agent/Broker & Market Authority!

How sad it is that people choose to use price as a common denominator when looking for the home inspector when they really should be looking for reputation...

Oct 17, 2011 03:01 AM #1
Rainer
323,560
Don MacLean
New England Real Estate Center Inc. - Easton, MA
Realtor-Homes for Sale- Easton Mass

Charles, people need to realize that homework does not end in school but continues for a life time. When we have buyers looking we give the guidelines of things they will be and need to do.

Hire a liscence inspector ( call and research 2 or 3) and do homework on all................then chose. Price is not everything, but the problems they find may be priceless.

Enjoy the day

Oct 17, 2011 03:05 AM #2
Rainmaker
174,893
Kate Kate
San Diego, CA

Selecting a home inspector by price tag makes as much sense as shopping for the lowest quoted interest rate.

Oct 17, 2011 05:59 AM #3
Rainer
284,418
Steven Cook
No Longer Processing Mortgages. - Tacoma, WA

Charles -- You have given a great list of qualifications that will be of benefit to all homebuyers who use it to find their inspector.  Have a fantastic week!

Oct 17, 2011 06:01 AM #4
Ambassador
1,333,169
Charles Buell
Charles Buell Inspections Inc. - Seattle, WA
Seattle Home Inspector

Paul, while I don't get a lot of price shoppers---it can be frustrating when that is their primary focus

Don, school never ends does it---when is recess anyway?

Kate, the curse of the uninformed :)

Steven, thanks

Oct 17, 2011 09:30 AM #5
Rainmaker
683,797
James Quarello
JRV Home Inspection Services, LLC - Wallingford, CT
Connecticut Home Inspector

A good list and some of these points I use when selling my services. Most calls from prospective clients usually start with the caller asking for a quote. Rarely do they want to ask questions. A sure sign of not doing their homework.

Oct 17, 2011 10:37 AM #6
Ambassador
1,333,169
Charles Buell
Charles Buell Inspections Inc. - Seattle, WA
Seattle Home Inspector

Jim even when the question is harmless---asked because they just don't know what else to say---it is for sure a sign that they did not do their homework.

Oct 17, 2011 10:52 AM #7
Rainmaker
488,436
Donald Hester
NCW Home Inspections, LLC - Wenatchee, WA
NCW Home Inspections, LLC

Charlie,

Very good info there. I agree they should talk to several inspectors and look at what is written and their site.

Price is always first for everyone but we have to let them know why price is not a very good gauge.

Oct 17, 2011 02:40 PM #8
Ambassador
1,333,169
Charles Buell
Charles Buell Inspections Inc. - Seattle, WA
Seattle Home Inspector

Don, I find that if they have found me through my blog I have to finally bring up the price when we are all done talking about other things :)

Oct 17, 2011 05:13 PM #9
Rainmaker
1,833,704
Jay Markanich
Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC - Bristow, VA
Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia

That's a good list Charlie.

And as to the bear, did you tell them where it pooped?  (Couldn't resist, seeing your other post...)

Oct 18, 2011 10:49 PM #10
Rainmaker
151,104
Aida Pinto
United Associated Brokers - Long Beach, CA
Real Estate Broker (562) 884-6196

Hello Charlie, you make some excellent points: "Do you have to jump through more than one hoop to contact them---i.e. is their phone number front and center?"  This has been one of my beef's as well...sometimes you have to hire a private detective to find the phone number to call them....I try to make it as easy for anyone to reach me....and I answer my phone.

Oct 19, 2011 03:03 AM #11
Ambassador
1,333,169
Charles Buell
Charles Buell Inspections Inc. - Seattle, WA
Seattle Home Inspector

Jay, for sure :)

Aida, the phone number thing is one of my pet peeves as well.  Often I go to someone's website and it is REALLY hard to find a phone number----or an email address.  Another thing that makes me click away instantly is if I have to fill out some dang form in order to contact them.  I know what those forms are for but to me they say:  "I don't really want to talk to you but if you take the time to fill out this form I will."

Oct 19, 2011 03:13 AM #12
Rainmaker
579,627
Chris Smith
Re/Max Chay Realty Inc., Brokerage - New Tecumseth, ON
South Simcoe, Caledon, King, Orangeville Real Esta

Charles, I counsel my clients to select their home inspector very carefully, and have the names of many really good home inspectors handy.

Oct 19, 2011 03:54 PM #13
Ambassador
1,333,169
Charles Buell
Charles Buell Inspections Inc. - Seattle, WA
Seattle Home Inspector

Chris, it is good to have a good list for sure---you can't always get the one you want.

Oct 19, 2011 05:39 PM #14
Rainmaker
233,449
Reuben Saltzman
Structure Tech Home Inspections - Minneapolis, MN
Delivering the Unbiased Truth.

Great advice Charles, especially #4.  Well, the second #4, that is ;)

Oct 24, 2011 02:35 PM #15
Ambassador
1,333,169
Charles Buell
Charles Buell Inspections Inc. - Seattle, WA
Seattle Home Inspector

Reuben, I can't believe no one else noticed---perhaps they just didn't say anything---thanks---all corrected now.

Oct 24, 2011 07:33 PM #16
Post a Comment
Spam prevention
Show All Comments

What's the reason you're reporting this blog entry?

Are you sure you want to report this blog entry as spam?

Ambassador
1,333,169

Charles Buell

Seattle Home Inspector
Ask me a question
*
*
*
*
Spam prevention

Additional Information