Beyond the SOP

I have been struggling with this and although it may be a divisive issue I want to know what other inspectors think.

We have a good SOP and its a good agreed upon standard but the organization seems to think going beyond is good for business.

Comments are;
I can charge more because people see the value.
It sets me apart from the other guys.
I am better than average because I go past the SOP.
Other guys do it so I have to ect.

What about comparing that to quality services and products?

Haagen Dazs ice cream costs more and they have no problem selling it.

Brooks Brothers sells a ton of suits that are double the price of a Sears store suit.

We pay gladly $100 for a flashlight when we could get one for $3.99 at Home Depot.

We buy rib eye steaks when chuck steak is half the price.

Inspectors give away Recall Check, Home Buy Back, Infrared and a number of other things.

Why does this profession feel the need to give stuff away. Last time I went to the dentist I spent $800 and got a toothbrush, everything else I paid for?

I giveaway a 90 day limited home warranty from American Home Warranties . The seem to pay out better than the rest. I actually pay for the warranty out of my own pocket because it helps keep my customer satisfaction rate very high.
I do use a moisture meter on any areas I suspect there will be a problem. I open up electrical panels and the blower cabinets of air handlers, you know the little extras. In my view the SOP does not go far enough to insure customer satisfaction.

I will probably do the Home Back Program because it just makes sense.
Recall Check, I have known too many people who tried it and just did not like the program. Also, I am leery of any company making me sign an agreement stating that I am not allowed to voice my dissatisfaction about a product to the public.

Everybody likes freebies. That is just the way people are. My girlfriend’s real estate company gives away promotional stuff in a branded baggie promoting some local businesses. She has found to give them the baggie after her conversation with them, because sometimes they seem distracted what is the bag.:shock:

Yep I get the better service like walk the roof, open the panel ect.

I open every door and window and check every single device, adds maybe 10 minutes.

I also do a careful walk around the property and can answer repair costs or appliance life expectancy questions.

I can’t get my head around offering things that cost me money for free.

You add it into your fee. Thermal Imagining is a separate inspection and should be charge that way, in my opinion.

You are like me, trying to understand why home inspectors do not charge considerably more for large homes. If buyer can afford a large home, he can afford to pay the inspector more. It works great for me.

Please do not lump together the 90% (Hobbyists) in with the 10% (Professionals)!

Thank you.

You absolutely kill me why are you so hung up on this, charge for what you do above the SOP. The SOP is for the newbies they charge $199.00 for a standard Home inspection what do you charge $201.99 you are ranting all over the board.
You are not going to change how people operate their business note I said their business operate your business any way you like. This is a business of competition sit on the track and the train runs over you???

I’m in other licensed businesses. I always provide my clients with much more than I’m required to by law.

Think of your SOP like a building code. For example: Let’s say code requires you to use 2" X 10" joist to span a certain distance. You are free to use a 2" x 12" if you want the floor to be stiffer so that your client’s china closet doesn’t shake every time someone walks across the dining room.

Wrap your head around this Monday I did a 3000 SQ FT home and charged $600.00 WHY because I can. I paid a lot of money and time to become the only Certified Master inspector, Master HVAC tech with 40 years of experience and the cream on the milk a level lll thermographer not only in Okla but all 50 States to my knowledge no one else has those three designations and I put every thing I know into every home and commercial inspection I do including thermal and I get paid well for it.

I don’t worry about any competition especially if they own a Flir one

Provide more, charge more. Provide the basics, charge basic fees.

Sad that the REA’s know this, and could care less about anything but the home selling. I am with James.

Coffee your place or mine:twisted:

Yeah I am hung up on this but after reading many of your posts I would guess you’d be a lot harder to kill than just from reading my complaint.

I just wanted to hear other opinions on a thread dedicated to this topic.

IMO, most home inspector services are seriously undervalued.
People usually have no clue how much time (including after office time), effort, education, experience, licensing, insurance we put into it.

Many times I have taken the chance to piss off the agent when I loose a job because they have already told them "it should cost around $300-400 dollars.
I have told them - please DO NOT set my pricing for me.
Then we still have to deal with the prostitutes of the industry.

Cute Charles, very cute. And kinda passive agressive too!:roll:

I am with the James gang on this to.
Your adding value to your service when you do more and have more to offer, it’s what sets you apart. So charge accordingly, and just because you have a IR camera doesn’t mean that you need to do a full scan of the home during the H.I. you can just use it to double check certain areas to CYA and again you charge more. If they want a full scan well then there you go that is a different entity and you charge accordingly.

What I’m thinking Ken. Wave it around and show a wet/ cold spot whatever but a scan with report is a different animal. I an guessing Twitt is using IR to enhance his regular report if the home buyer is present.

I don’t do wave around’s, if there is a roof ending on a wall, main panel, those sort of things yes I look for missing insulation on flips. One thing I do is image the HVAC as I had one come back on me as not checking it, turns out they didn’t read the report but now I put 2,3 images in to CMA. No more worries and I have had buyers dear old dad ask can I pay you to come scan my house :D, why certainly.

Offer more, make more. Offer less, make less.

Your business income can increase by charging more, doing more inspections or offering additional paid services. The first two are the easiest and the most profitable to improve.

Who uses only the SOP??

I don’t do wave arounds either as a leve lll I am qualified to write my own standards for my business and train any employees. I have standards I follow for every home inspection I perform every home gets the same IR treatment and its reasonably short. Electrical panels and tiled shower stalls are my trademark.

My main stay for IR is commercial roof scans and electrical panels period, they make me money. I operate two business separately Residential and commercial two web pages and on my IR web page *I don’t use the word Home.

The statement don’t give your IR away is stupid what is stupid is buy a camera and not use it to promote your home inspection business and charge more for what you do. And what is more stupid than that is buying a cheap camera and no training. Your return on your give aways as some call them is much higher than your little stand alone residential scans. I don’t advertise for stand alones and don’t even like them I perhaps do 5 a year if lucky and that is because someone insisted that I do them. I do home inspections with a IR touch and I make a good living:shock:

Maybe saying using the SOR as the standard was a bad choice of words. Of course you should go beyond the minimum standard. My point is if you offer IR or any other specialized service like radon and mold testing, septic, well ect that should be another fee. That’s all.

We charge extra for radon and mold testing so I am wondering how IR is different to some guys and why some offer it free?

This is an interesting topic as I’m new, still in my first year. Wondering how other asses their fee’s. Do others look at it on a hourly basis or do you use other factors to determine how to set your pricing. I know expierence & other factors are involved, using IR, what the market will bear, etc. But how did you determine where you set you base structural inspection fee.
Also for those of you in regulated states or for that matter those that use NACHI SOP. If you go beyond those SOP’s in some areas but not others, do you think that you are opening yourself up to liabilities? Couldn’t the argument be made in court “well Mr. inspector you state that your SOP doesn’t require you to inspect that, but here in your report it says that you inspected X,Y,& Z but those weren’t required according to your SOP”.