What Do You Expect Out of an Inspection?

After performing fee based inspections full time for the past 6+ years I find myself asking a repeated question–am I giving clients what they need to make the best decision?  My immediate answer is that I’m pretty damn close.  Why not 100% you might say?  I’ll tell you why….no inspector can deliver the perfect product to every client because every client’s needs are slightly different than the last.  A first time homebuyer will want to know as much as they can because they’re a bit nervous, excited and typically don’t have the building knowledge to know what is minor and what is major in terms of defects.  Veteran homeowners, on the other hand, may tell us to not worry about the little things and really focus on X, Y or Z.  That’s understandable and often times expected.  So what can we do as inspectors to fulfill these needs?  Anything and everything we can to deliver as much information about the property we’re inspecting so that we can allow our clients to make the best decision possible with the best information.

This has been and forever will be the foundation of Domicile Consulting:  Perform inspections without fear or favor.  I’m pretty sure that most will understand the without fear portion, but what about favor?  How many friends of yours share horror stories from past or present about the inspector who said everything looks great only to find out later, unfortunately, that things quite aren’t as they were made out to be?  Many; in fact, too many for most of us.  But how could this be?  The inspector is there to work for you, the client, to help you best understand what it is you’re buying and what it will take to keep the building healthy and performing like a fine tuned machine.  Unfortunately many inspectors and some companies tend to soft peddle inspections to avoid losing valuable relationships with real estate agents (their gravy train!) who often refer these inspectors because they make less waves and deals tend to go through without too many ‘problems’.  I.e., everyone gets paid and the buyer typically gets hosed.  That is a gross disservice to the client, the homebuying process, and the inspection industry at large.
Everyone knows that no home is perfect and will require some form of building repair or maintenance to remain healthy.  It’s our job to uncover as much information about our given property which allows our clients to decide if its really just a ‘pig with lipstick’ or a solid home that needs a few minor repairs to stay in tip top shape.   It’s not an easy task and we don’t take it lightly.  And we never will.
-Ross
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