A letter form KARCI's President

KARCI Members and Kansas Inspectors,

Greetings fellow inspectors, on the 17th of July the Kansas Home Inspector Registration Board
held its meeting in Topeka. Present at that meeting along with board members was both I and
Dan Bowers from KARCI and Kerry Parham from KAREI. Kerry Parham and I are serving on
the SOP committee and Dan Bowers in serving on the education committee The board meeting
discussed several items that are important to inspectors.

First I think it important for all members and inspectors to know that the all those in attendance
at the meeting had the best of intentions for home inspectors, our industry, and Kansas
consumers. While discussion was at times interesting and provoking, the intent of protecting
everyone involved was never forgotten. Although I hate admit, even the attorney was trying to
protect inspectors in his own way. At the end of the day, decisions were made and progress

Foremost on most everyone’s mind is the Standards of Practice that is being developed for
Kansas Inspectors. While no document is perfect I think that great strides were made to give us a
set of standards that inspectors can be confident in. As always, great minds disagree and
concessions were made but good results did prevail. It is of interest to note that during the
drafting of the SOP all three national associations were considered, their standards respected, and
all three equally rejected. Basically that means that this current SOP contains what we all
consider the best of all worlds. I think inspectors from any of the organizations will find
something they are familiar with.

The Kansas City team, Randy Sipe, Stacey VanHouten, and I spent several long days in Topeka
coming up with an initial draft of the SOP. The Wichita team took that draft of lofty ideals, toned
it down and tweaked it and issued a refined product. After much debate today, I am confident
that we are pretty close to an SOP that will work for us.

I challenge inspectors to get involved. Read the revised SOP as it gets published and take a few
moments if you will to provide input if you feel it can help us make this a better document.

The education provider standards were hashed out for quite a while and finally shelved until the
next meeting to provide time for the board to research ideas and ask some important questions.
Establishing a good set of rules and regulations in regards to school requirements is no easy task
but one that must be accomplished in short order. Look for more information to become
available as decisions are made. My personal opinion was that the AG’s office was a little too
involved in the discussion which made the decision making process very difficult for the board.
Maybe this will improve the next go round.

Some decisions in regards to the requirements for education providers should still be carefully
considered. I think that currently the requirements being considered for education provider
instructors come close to denying us the ability to use seasoned and qualified inspectors as
instructors. I think it is important that there be allowances in the rules and regulations that allows
for qualified inspectors to teach those at pre-registration schools. As well, there is some struggle
in determining how the pre-registration education should be presented in regards to online
training. While everyone was in agreement that strictly online courses should be avoided we
must still take into account the technology available today. Technology such as distant education
training that uses video technology for virtual classrooms. I think something to be considered in
this area is some basic requirements such as a means of verifying students are present for the
instructions, a method for students to interact via voice and video, and a minimum class size of
10 students or similar. Considering the demographics for students in a virtual classroom could be
nation-wide, this should be do-able.

During this last SOP meeting, we fought hard to reduce government intervention into your
business. We were instrumental in removing language in the SOP that stipulated what must go
into your contract with your client. It is our opinion that these decisions should be made between
the inspector and his attorney. An inspector should be free to draft his contract through the use of
an attorney so long as it meets the minimum stature requirements and what the inspector and
their attorney feel important. That being said, an inspector would be a fool to have a contract that
has not been carefully reviewed by their attorney. Have you had yours done yet?

Are you getting ready to January 1st, 2010? Are you still unsure what the requirements are for
obtaining your registration to inspect in Kansas? We are looking at having a CEU class in
OCT/NOV time frame with a class intended to educate inspectors on all requirements. We hope
you can find time to attend, it will be a great opportunity to earn CEU’s and become familiar
with the new law that affects you.

We have worked hard to get reasonable language in HB2260 that was signed into law this year.
Dan Bowers took the bull by the horns (the Senate committee) and convinced them through
some fairly excellent testimony, to reduce the liability limit to $2000. It isn’t perfect but it is a far
sight better than $10,000. We still have to work hard to get the language changed in the Statute
whereby we can put wording in our contract to limit our liability to $2,000 instead of the $10,000
that is currently in it. There was a minor snafu at the office of the Reviser and conflicting
language was included in this last bill. This is an administrative error that can be fixed by the
KHIRB (Ks Home Inspector Registration Board) this next legislative session.

There are several bond companies coming out of the woodwork competing for your business. Be
careful to assure that the company you use for your bond is licensed to operate in Kansas; this is
a requirement by the statute! Some vendors you may want to check out so far are:

www.SmithManus.net and

www.ipsico.com Contact Wally Glaser @ wglaser@ipsico.com

So, what next? Well, on the 10th of August, there will be another meeting of the KHIRB in Wichita.
Information about this meeting will be posted on the KHIRB website. Inspectors should plan on being
there. Your leadership will be working hard to see that the interest of inspectors in Kansas is protected. As
always, we will continue to be your watchdog. This comes at a price however and we need your support.

We strongly believe that less government intervention in our business is a good thing. We have worked
hard to make accomplishments in that regard. Countless hours over the past years have been spent in
Topeka, lobbying in your behalf. What we need is your membership. You need a strong voice in Topeka
and KARCI has been that voice. We have worked hard to earn the respect of Legislators in Topeka and
worked hard to assure your voice is heard. Numbers speak; your membership gives us that. If you haven’t
done so already, get an application for membership and get it in, you will be glad you did. We are the
ONLY organization that has provided you with training and CEU’s, membership meetings, and support in
Topeka. Lets keep it rolling!

Thanks for your support and join the team! Contact me or David Moriconi at david@m3inspect.com for
your application form.

Michael Greenwalt, President

We have been informed that InterNACHI was the first school/organization to submit courses for continuing education approval. In fact, we submitted ALL of our courses (about 100 pounds printed out): www.nachi.org/education.htm

We fully expect our courses to be approved by the board first.

Please answer this: why is licensing needed in Kansas??

I would like an explanation, to everyone here on this message boad, who Kerry Parham is, and why he is on the SOP committee. Be truthful here.

“Although I hate to admit, even the attorney was trying to protect us”. Yeah, right. An attorney only protects the one who pays him.

Standards from the other associations rejected by whom? Mike, you stated in a SOP meeting that you wanted all associations out, and that home inspectors would not have to be a member of any association, so why are you pushing us to join KARCI? Do you need the revenue?

It costs $2,700 to take 10 classes at JCCC to learn how to be a home inspector. Is this how the board plans to make money? There is no national test for home inspectors. The board of regents should come up with the educational requirements.

Define what a “seasoned” home inspector is for educational requirements.

You say that online courses should be avoided, but you allow for virtual classrooms? Have you decided what kitchen type appliances will not be inspected?

I guess I am a fool for using NACHI’s agreement.

There are dozens of inspectors who do not want anything to do with any rules, regulations, and government intervention in their business. That is why most of them are Kansas corporations. I have, as dozens of other home inspectors, have never been approached to join any national, or state orginization. That is because we, and us few dozen or so inspectors, have most of the home inspection business. We know you want that business.

Why is licensing needed? Why do all of you guys want it so bad? Why are inspectors involved with promoting these SOP’s and educational requirements when RE agents will be doing home evaluations anyway? I have proof that they are already doing them.

All of you have it wrong. You should be fighting to register everyone who does home inspections, and eleminate all of Section B that exempts RE, insurace agents, home builders, etc. License us, license everyone. Kansas corporations can do business with anyone with independent contracts.

You are in deep, and getting in deeper. You may be digging a hole you cannot get out of. You will be wishing these bills where never passed. Join the team? No. Eliminate these laws rules, and regulations that are unnecessary, and only favor special interest groups who want to make money off of us, then maybe I will send you a check.

Gary…the phenomena of home inspection legislation turns men into puppets or putty. Very few will take the position that you have…but don’t let that change you a bit.

Somehow, there are people who think that it is important to be at the bargaining table and will compromise in order to get there.

It’s silly, I know. You will hear them object to licensing…then watch them help write the SOP while you wonder where there heads are really at. But they want that seat at the table.

They explain how much worse the law could be if we had only “the other side” implementing it, so they think their involvement could somehow make it better. To me, it’s like helping the man planning to rape my wife and daughter by sharing some of their likes and dislikes…so that they can enjoy the rape a bit more than they otherwise would.

But the bad guys know that their desire to “have a seat at the table” requires them to be good boys and to take their medicine like “men”, so they do…instead of fight.

Nick has published on another thread that Barnes is living on borrowed time and will soon be held accountable for his treachory. In my opinion, since Barnes was so instrumental in developing this law…his disembowlment could help to un-develop it. It will always be on the books since it has been signed into law, but the implementation date can be postponed indefinitely.

I may be the last soldier to lay down his gun like you, Gary…but a seat at the table is not an honorable place to be when what is being served is the death of our profession. Keep up the good fight.

Thanks, James. Let me tell you who Kerry Parham is. He is a lobbyist for the Kansas Association of Realtors, and he is on the SOP committee.

This whole law, board, rules, regulations should all be investigated by the Attorney General’s office and the justice department. This is a sham and a scam. Lawmakers, and the governor of Kansas are blind to this, as well as most home inspectors.

Absolutly no one wanted to say that. No one will respond to why licensing is needed in Kansas. Socialism is coming to Kansas. State governments, and the national government want control of industries that they have no idea how to operate. All they see is dollars, and their need to appease their egos.

I see the lost confidence of all elected officials in Kansas by all the people of Kansas. They all should be elected out. The board should all be replaced due to conflicts of interest. I am so glad that Senator Wysong and I put the sunset rule in place. Note that the bills have expiration dates. The life of the board is limited. Wait until all RE agents find out what really is going on. Their industry is next.

By the way, Mike G. was not at the hearing when Dan Bowers gave his “testomony”. I was. The reason the liability was lowered, was that one Senator was concerned that if a new inspector put up a $10,000 bond, one lawsuit would wipe that out. I mentioned during a break that my E&O deductable was $2,000, and that most new inspectors cannot get insurance coverage of any kind when they start a new business. So, one Senator suggested the $2,000 limit, to ease the stress of new home inspectors.

This whole farm stinks; just sheep, following the advice of the head dog. Oh, that was on another thread.

Guys - Lets get some facts straight.

Kerry Parham is NOT a lobbyist for ANYBODY. He is an ASHI home inspector from Wichita. Past President of the Wichita ASHI Chapter, and current President of the KAREI group that Jeff Barnes WAS president of.

There are 2 distinct home inspection associations in Kansas - KAREI which has has been discussed MANY times on this and other Boards was formed by 4 ASHI inspectors from Wichita AND as anybody that went to the 3 meetings they’ve held realizes are mostly ASHI guys.

They hired a lobbyist and the realtors, legislators, etc believed they represented all in Kansas inspectors.

Mike Greenwalt is current President of KARCI the other Kansas home inspector association made up of NACHI, ASHI and NAHI members / that fought to keep this POS off your backs AND continues to fight to try and make this thing half-way fair to all of us. He is asking for concerned inspectors to join the KARCI group SO they can have more of a voice. OR you can simply let the other group KAREI take over - Your choice.

Yes I made 5 trips to Topeka in 1 week arguing to legislators and senators that a $10,000 liability would open us up to every whiny baby out there. As an example I continually used the fact that most of our “MECHANICAL WARRANTY COMPANIES” put language in their policies limiting their annual out lay to either $2,000 or $2,500. They charge about $425-$450 p/yr.

Why should we be subject to 5 times that. Several Senators agreed.

We got $2,000 instead of $10,000

One other thing.

Some of the Kansas Board do not want entry level education or training to be allowed to be done by the internet, correspondence, etc. Others think its OK.

Mike Greenwalt is not on the Kansas Board, hes on the SoP Committee. He was one arguing to allow online education in Kansas for inspectors.

I suggest you re-read his letter.

Note: One of the Board members had gobs of outlines, etc that Internachi had sent him to demonstrate what type of programs they had available. There was probably 8" of paper from Internachi at least.

If memory serves me correctly someone (maybe the AG’s attorney) said this was not useable YET because the education committee hadn’t set up requirements yet for CE, etc. Jeff Barnes and the Board were still working on requirements for Entry Level Classes, etc at this meeting.

Thanks for your clarifications, Dan.

Another thing that I am concerned about, is that there are so many things yet to be worked out, so many people involved, that there is no way this thing can get off the ground by January 1, 2010. There are forms, addresses, where are the records to be kept, enforcement, etc. We, as inspectors, have forms and reports to change. Yet, there is so much reteric and attorney involvement; feet dragging. The rules and regulations listed on the board web site are in conflict for sure with the SOP’s. I think the board is taking what it has, and throwing it up on the wall to see what happens, and the AG is throwing it back. So much needs to be done, and some legislation will, again, have to be re-written, I do not see this commencing by January. Again, Kansas right to work laws will conflict with what the board has. I have seen educational classes that teach home inspectors things that are way over the SOP’s, and waste the money of home inspectors. I was told that Kerry is a lobbyist. I guess that guy was wrong. Politics are cruel. And, as you can see, there is just too much ASHI involvement here. They want total control; this is why I, and several other inspectors, are resisting. At one time, we considered starting our own association. Too many control freeks out there who want to satisfy their egos, and don’t care about home buyers.

I believe membership in a known no-entrance-requirement diploma mill such as ASHI, where one can join with nothing more than a valid credit card, online, in 30 seconds… should be grounds for immediate dismissal from the licensing Board.

Perhaps the best thing that can be done is to appoint new board members. So much has been re-written and discussed, especially through attorneys, that mass confusion has resulted. All in Kansas, and you also Nick, must realize that SB 329 from last year was never voted on by the Kansas congress. All of this can go away with slight re-wording of this bill, and passage by the Kansas congress.

Gary, I apologize but I was unaware this was on this BBS, I do not visit here often enough. You ask some fair questions, I will give you my best answer.

  1. Why is licensing needed in Kansas? To be honest, at this point it is irrelevant. I understand both sides of the fight and where there is a fight to be made for our members it will be made. To make the fight to the members is fruitless, we know thier stance. To make the fight to the KHIRB is useless, they have no authority to make change in that regard. To make the fight to the governing body is our only avenue; but that doesn’t answer you question. Personally, I don’t believe it will provide a benefit to inspectors or the consumer, the jury is going to be out on that one for a while anyway.

  2. Kerry Parham is the president of KARCI, he is a knowledged inspector and he volunteered. Getting inspectors to volunteer to spend thier own time to tackle the tasks that lie before us January 1st is daunting. We can only hope there are more volunteers out there, how about you?

  3. Was the attorney trying to protect us? Honestly, I can only speak of what I witnessed. I am quite sure others there can attest to thier own feelings as to the attorneys motives. We didn’t pay him, and he has not, as of yet, recieved a penny for his time. That aside, yes he was trying to protect inspectors. To the point we had to convince him he was going overboard. Keep in mind also that the KHIRB does not have the duty to protect inspectors, it’s duty is to protect the public. Like it or not, that is the law. I am no fan of having an attorney or a Realtor on the board but that wasn’t my choice. That was the choice of the governor and that ship has sailed.

  4. Standards rejected by whom? Ok, maybe my expression didn’t get the point across well enough. The point is we (the 3 KC SOP members) took into consideration the SOP from every referrence we could find. I can honestly say that there was never a time that any association was ever considered in the SOP, only inspectors in Kansas. That was, and always will be, our focus.

  5. Why push joining KARCI? Do we need the revenue? Yes, we do need the revenue, as does any association that is going to serve its members. Rather we survive as an organization is up to you, and the inspectors of Kansas, those who do business in Kansas, and those who want to be members of this great organization. KARCI is there to serve inspectors, represent them in Topeka, and to assist inspectors in earning CEU’s necessary to continue as an inspector. This doesn’t come free. We hope you will consider joining, your voice would be greatly appreciated, as well as your experience.

  6. You referenced cost at JCCC and if the board will recieve revenue from this? As far as I know there is no monies that will go to the board or the general revenue fund. If it does this would be highly unethical and I am sure someone in Kansas will bring that to the AG’s office. Should the board of regents come up with educational requirments? Could you elaborate some on that and reference the benefits. Maybe there is something to be discussed there. As of now, no the BOR does not have a dog in that fight, they only regulate the schools; as it is now.

  7. Define what is seasoned in regards to an inspector? That is for Kansas inspectors to define I would hope. The point being that if the requirements for instructors are defined in a manner that doesn’t allow inspectors to teach inspectors; who the heck is gonna teach them? I would expect to see inspectors in the classroom, collectively they have the bulk of the knowledge to pass on to new inspectors. Maybe it was a poor descriptive choice, I hope I cleared that up.

  8. Online courses vs. vitual classrooms? Yes, I think I understand the question. I was trying to get across that the technology exist to have virtual classrooms that meet the state’s definition for “Classroom” study as stated in the statute. I would like to see that options used to it’s fullest extent. The board was not receptive to the idea and as it stands now, no online courses are accepted; virtual or othwerwise.

  9. You state there are dozens of inspectors who want nothing to do with rules, regulations, or government intervention. You are preaching to the chior. As it stands today…well it just ain’t gonna happen (to use my southern drawl). It is here, and it is real. I am volunteering my time and effort to see that inspectors in Kansas get the best possible conditions to work with; and under. I hope to see many more inspectors do the same. This goes back to KARCI, strength does lie in numbers and if you want your message heard, join.

  10. I was wishing these bills were never passed years ago; that hasn’t changed. There are however two sides to this fight. One is what we want, one is what we have. First, what we have is a law, like it or not. I choose to fight to make this the best it can be for all inspectors in Kansas. If we all choose to do nothing, we will get exactly what we fight for; nothing. Imagine for a moment all of this government intervention put upon us without our input? Quite frankly that is why we are here. Hundreds of inspectors in Kansas, and virtually all of them sit on the sideline. To use an old expression; “I choose nothing, therefore I am”. The fight was in Topeka, before the law was passed, that ship has sailed. The second part of the fight is what we want. Well, that doesn’t come cheap. And putting the cat back in the bag after it gets out is extremely difficult. I spoke to my representetive this weekend, visited his house, had breakfast with him. It is a slow road.

  11. And finally, your points are well recieved. I would be happy to answer any questions you have personally and my phone number is 785 226-2912, feel free to call. I hope more inspectors get involved, I pray more inspectors get involved, I beg more inspectors to get involved. This is your business, how can you sit on the sideline and let yourselves get owned? If you want to right the ship you have to get on board. Thanks for your input.

One last thing, the SOP. This is a hard road. Our process may seem a bit unorthodox and I am sure was not clear to anyone not deeply involved. We started off with lofty ideals, we did what I call mindmapping. Some of you may be familiar with that term. The first SOP took everything, and everyone into consideration. So yes, the first SOP was not pretty, was never intended to be. It was however a starting point that we could start discussions with. After the Wichita team got involved, well it tipped to the other side, lawyer speak, punctuation, word order, etc. It still wasn’t pretty, or understandable. A lot of good people, and anyone who wanted to show up and get involved, put a lot of effort to protect Kansas inspectors and Kansas residents. The work isn’t done yet, but were getting close. If you haven’t read the latest SOP version, please do so. We took input via email, in the middle of the last meeting, and addressed every concern raised. We want to hear you voice and quite frankly were somewhat dismayed that we haven’t. Few choose to speak and Gary I thank you for doing so.