Charging extra for crawl spaces...

Hello everyone,

Just curious on this one. According to the SOP it’s a mandatory for all home inspectors to inspect crawl spaces unless a safety concern arises. However, I have seen where inspectors will advertise that they will check this area for an extra nominal fee? Is this practice legal since it’s already mandatory according to the SOP unless it’s unsafe for you to do so?

2.3. Basement, Foundation & Crawlspace
I. The inspector shall inspect:
[INDENT]A. The basement.
B. The foundation
C. The crawlspace.

II. The inspector is not required to:
[INDENT]A. Enter any crawlspaces that are not readily accessible or where entry could cause damage or pose a hazard to the inspector.

[/INDENT][/INDENT]

Of course, since a home inspector is free to set his prices in consideration to the characteristics of the property. If the prospective client doesn’t like that, they are free to find another inspector who won’t charge extra.

Nice to meet you Nick. :slight_smile:

I see your point. However why would you do it that way if it cost you business especially since most people only charge an extra $45 to $65 dollars.

I don’t charge extra for them. It doesn’t make sense to lose a $289 inspection trying to charge $45 to $75 more. I hate doing crawls but I hate sitting at home not making money even more.:mrgreen:

I’m with you. Flat fee pricing just makes more sense. Plus the last think you want to do when dealing with websites is having a potential client read more than they need to or want to. I look at mine everyday to see how I can make it shorter and to the point.

If it works for you, great.
But maybe I don’t like crawlspaces but am willing to do them for an extra fee. Personal preference and a business decision.

Same with older properties etc.

They cost money to inspect, so why not charge. You need a cawl suit, knee pads and a mask, not to mention the extra time it takes. I always charge for them. I never quote until I know exactly what I am inspecting.

There’s a big difference between a flat fee and almost doing them for free. :frowning: -Especially from one with all of your experience and credentials.

Cost of Service

Complete Home Inspection: $150 up to 3K Square Feet

Find a lower price I’ll beat it!

Crawl Spaces: No additional charge.

Sprinkler Systems: No additional charge.

Swimming Pools: No additional charge.

FAQ’s

Q: Why do you charge less than 99% of all inspectors in the STL area? Do I still get the same quality inspection?

Ditto here.

I’ve noted the past several months when I go to the ASHI/CREIA dinner meetings that all of the inspectors who were charging extra for crawl spaces, extra for homes built before 1960, double extra for homes built before 1945, extra for going to a home in Logan Heights, etc., are no longer in business. I think when it comes to pricing, KISS is a very good method.

I’ve never used a cawl suit (don’t even know what it is), knee pads, and a mask to do a crawl space.

I also never quote until I know exactly what I am inspecting. I have aggravation “surcharges,” travel “surcharges,” etc. I just don’t advertise that fact. I do advertising prices “starting at…” and to “call for a firm quote for your zip code that is good for 30 days.” It has worked persistently and consistently.

I’m fair. Crawlspaces suck in my area. I don’t see a vapor barrier or pea gravel on 1 in 100. They’re low, most are a little to a lot wet and muddy. It takes longer to inspect them. There are more problems in there, and multiple hazards. If the furnace is down there it is harder to check really good, etc. About 20 years ago, I didn’t wear suits either - BUT, after years of cuts, tetna shots, rat or mouse droppings, live critters, etc. - today I suit up, with knee pads, gloves, a bump hat, a flashlight and a flood light.

I’ve got a rent house on a crawl. I’ve called heating techs in cold or wet weather and had them refuse to go into the muddy crawlspace.

I’m like Russel, I believe in keeping it simple. So I look and see what in my area is the average house and set a fee for this - THEN I charge extra for just about everything else I do that doesn’t fit in the average. So for the past 14 years I’ve done the only reasonable AND fair thing for ME and MY personal health and well being - I charge an extra $45. for crawls.

If they ever don’t wanta pay, I’m quite happy to send them to others.

I charge extra for: a 2nd kitchen; over 3 baths; over 1 HVAC system; a crawlspace; over 35 miles from home 1-way; ANY outbuildings; over 50 years old - over 75 years old - over 100 years old; and extra for sf every 500 sf.

Works for me … Always has.

Old guy rule #1 - work less, charge more.

Indeed, why? :shock: :shock: :shock:

Experience has it. :smiley: :smiley: :smiley:

I did a reinspection of a crawlspace to confirm the sump pump had been repaired. It has a sump but not tiles to carry the water to the sump. I tried to explain to the guy trying to flip this house that he has a problem here that needs to be corrected.

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I guess I’m still young. I like “work more, charge more.” Of course, even when I’m old, I’ll probably be trying to work more. Kind of like Kevin Bacon said, “If you’re not working, you’ve been forgotten.” I hope I’m always young so that I can always work. When I can no longer work, someone please put me out of my misery.

Russel, Don’t worry about getting old. If you take care of yourself, drink an appropriate amount of Margaritas, and have a little luck you’ll be able to work well into old age; unless you prefer to retire. I’m 65+ and expect to do at least ten more years of inspecting. It’s fun, and way less work than swinging a hammer ten hours a day like I used to do.

To me this business is a passion. I truly enjoy it and I truly love soaking in all the advise and expertise you guys have to offer. I simply do it because it’s exciting to me and I enjoy helping people especially those who tries to buy into the American dream and has saved years to do so. Now you know why my prices will always remain low. With that said though gas prices are crazy so I’ll have to raise my rates to compensate sooner or later. By the way I’m new to InterNACHI. It’s been great meeting everyone!!

PS. I’m sorry who ever posted “I’m a embarrassment to the profession” feels that way. But instead of judging why don’t you tell me why you feel that way? If you make a valid point I’ll be sure to listen to it and make changes from there. This board is meant to educate and that’s why I joined InterNACHI to learn only from the best. So if you have something to say let me hear it.

I charge more and have never had a problem justifying it. Most people watch you crawl out, stagger to the hose bib to clean your hands and forearms off before you begin to remove the respirator, headlamp and knee pads (then the suit at the truck) and say…

“you don’t charge enough for that”… Honest.:shock:

And Crawls in SC are prevalent…

Russell, no mask in a crawlspace? Not healthy.

I know, but neither are the burgers, fries, pizza, etc.

I remember my youth when I used to hide from my wise old grandmother in the crawlspace. Probably spent half my youth under the house. The other half was spent at school eating paste and lead paint, and sticking my fingers in the light sockets, yet I still have this awful straight stringy hair. Ah, yes, the good ol’ days… :margarit:

I only add an extra cost if the crawl is wet and I ruin my tyvek suit, the replacement cost is 25.00 for this which all have been happy to pay.