California Realtors Association Attempts to regulate Home inspections

Seems California Realtor Associations are looking to regulate home inspections on a more local level. Without clear guide lines from the state, in Marin County it appears realtors are suggesting inspections are not predictable enough and may be thwarting efforts, costing tens of thousands of dollars or even derailing sales…? Their attempt at regulation on a local level is of concern to everyone. Some of the issues may be addressed by the NACHI pre-inspection (move in ready) where in the home seller can take controle of the situation and not allow any contingencies related to additional inspections. Another view is that short sales should require a more stream lined and less costly (limited) inspections. Local municipalities are encouraging adoptment of new rules and guidelines. “Our members and clients are experiencing problems about the conduct of inspections”.

Let me know your thoughts as to how else we can address what appears to be a growing movement… the writing is on the wall.

Hi Rick,

Are you referencing this information?

If so…

I’m wondering if the measure proposed is for a point-of-sale inspection from the AHJ/Buidling and Safety department for compliance issues (low flush toilets, safety glass in appropriate locations, GFCI’s, smoke and CO detectors etc) or if this is directed towards private, Home Inspections.

If these counties are trying to mandate inspection practices / standards / forms and such for private inspectors… that would seem difficult. But, as you are likely more intimate with this… maybe shed some light?

Thanks for info!

This was a front page article in the Marin Independent Journal on Sunday July 15, 2012. You can draw what you will from the article by going online. I felt it was a direct assult on our industry and profession (quotes) from an organization that is in a sales decline mode and looking for reasons to blame home inspectors/inspections in part for their woes… I don’t have any political aspirations. If so, I might seek to bridge some of the misunderstandings that exist. Without any state regulations or certifications for home inspectors here in California, we are subject to scrutiny from other state certified organizations as I believe the article demonstrates.

I believe Palmdale is/was moving this direction also. Is that right Tim? I remember something with regard to verification of permitted additions/modifications prior to transfer.

From what I recall, this was headed by city officials as opposed to a Realtor Association.

Can you offer any information as to the validity of this?

I live and work in the northern California area. This is not aimed at private inspectors. It is the local government requiring their own Building Official to inspect for unpermitted work, code, safety issues and anything else they want to tack on. The sellers and realtors hate it because it is a requirement for selling the property. The bootleg bathroom or deck that was put on in the 1970s? … Okay, get a permit for it and comply with the present day standards. $$$$$ Not able to qualify as the standards exist? Remove it from the property prior to sale! Marin county has a lawyer for every resident;-). Building officials needed something to do in the downturn and muni’s wanted fines and fees. Could be compared to traffic citation quotas. (speedtrap for houses)
Only my opinion …

Thanks Steve. That’s similar to what I’ve been hearing for cities in my area as well.

Last I heard (a year or so) the effort was stalled for a compliance inspection @ point of sale in Palmdale. I think too much “invasive-ness” was asked for.

Every city wants to re-invent the wheel for their own municipality when this topic comes up. The City of Los Angeles point of sale retrofit programs have co-existed for some time, right along side private inspectors and RE professionals, it’s surprising that other municipalities haven’t looked closer at this. Also, some areas (Inglewood among others) have a fee-based disclosure program where the buyer must obtain city generated disclosure in regards to permitted improvements.

The municipalities (Palmdale included) will preach Safety as their number one goal… in these times, I suppose everyone (city’s included) needs a buck too.