Coming soon: Sinkhole inspection course. Free and online.

Coming soon.

Thanks InterNACHI!

Fantastic, new continuing education courses!
Thanks for the heads up Nick.

We’re thinking about doing a companion episode on sink hole inspections as well. We’ll put the free, online course out first.

Nick, How many hours will the sink hole course be? and will it be available to people outside florida?

It looks like it is going to be an 8 hour course and yes, all our inspection courses are open to all members.

Haven’t been on here much, any news on the sinkhole inspection course?

We have liability issues to resolve for members who offer these inspections.

Rumor is… There ain’t a home yet to be built in Florida which will pass a sinkhole inspection… Jam yesterday, jam tomorrow, but never jam today!

Would I personally be willing to perform one of these shake-&-bake inspections? Twice the price of the house, in advance. :wink:

congrats to Russell Hensel, John Shishilla and Kelly Lashley on the new status
anybody want an apple?:smiley:

I do not know what that means. Thanks?

This is the first time I’ve ever cautioned inspectors about ancillary inspections, but after reviewing the research used for this course, all I can say is that I would hold off for now. I don’t feel 100% confident that we should be offering this service.

And neither would I.

PORT RICHEY - A January 1st deadline is fast approaching for Pasco and Hernando County homeowners.

That’s when insurance companies can drop their sinkhole coverage.

It is making a lot of business for inspector Billy Fernandez.

“I see about one or two homeowners’ associations a month. I’ve done more than 150 inspections over the last two months,” he said.

Many people are eager to get their homes tested for possibly sinkhole activity because of the new rights insurance companies will have on January 1st.

“The insurance companies are going to have the right to not offer sink hole coverage or not offer it any more,” according to Sharon Cavaliere of Beneficial Public Adjusting Service. “People who have paid for it up until now really need to address it while they have the opportunity.”

Tuesday, Fernandez spoke to a group of home and business owners. Some in the audience were bothered by the approaching changes.

“I don’t know what replacement costs would be,” said Traci Czyznick, a homeowner who listened to Fernandez’ presentation. “We’ve been in our house for five years, but we’ve seen little changes going on. It could be devastating. What would we do if there was a lot of damage? Where would we live, how would we pay for two places?”

Fernandez said he’s inspected at least 50 homes in Pasco County a week. The inspections are free.

I can’t wait to see the logo.

Not sure of the logo but, here’s the training video…


I got a call from a past client seeking to refinance her home in Clearwater. The appraiser called for a structural engineer. The issue is no extensions on her gutters causing water to drain and undermine the foundation causing step cracking. It’s been this way since they bought the home in 2002. The engineer says 1200.00 dollars for more testing without even coming out for a visual inspection. WTF. Extending the downspouts away from the foundation and repairing the step cracking should alleviate the problem. Monitor for continued settlement.

Sinkhole training is fine but it is like everything else we inspect. What will the symptoms lead us to? Surely a visual inspection should do the trick.

Lender needs structural engineer to sign off…any takers. Any G.C’s.


From nicks link

From: “Cox, Cassandra” <> Date: January 20, 2012 8:22:48 AM MST To: ‘Lisa Endza’ <> Cc: “‘’” <> Subject: RE: Instructor Approval

Good morning Lisa,

Thank you for your inquiry to have the following individuals approved as additional instructors, Russell Hensel, John Shishilla and Kelly Lashley. Effective as of Friday, January 20, 2012 your instructors have been approved from the date you submitted your request to have them approved as additional instructors for the following course to my office.

Russell Hensel, John Shishilla and Kelly Lashley Courses number 0000038

Thank you.

Cassandra Cox Operations Analyst II Education Provider Services Bureau of Education and Testing 850-921-8215 or 850-717-1328 (direct line) Scanner Fax number 850-922-2316 or 850-922-1228

So this means every settlement crack we document has to be referred to a g.c. or sinkhole specialist for further eval. I personally could use some education on the difference between settling issues and sinkholes. Don’t get scared Nick…we need this course especially in Florida.

I’m a GC and I do not see where that qualifies me to evaluate sinkholes or the potential for sinkholes. Also, do not see where a structural engineer is capable of visually inspecting for sinkholes. without the aid of core drilling, sampling and evaluation by a geotechnical engineer, how is anyone capable of determining if a sinkhole is present? The FDOT can’t predict where a sinkhole will appear! Even if there is a hole in the ground at the structure, it may or may not be a sinkhole. I personally can’t get my hands around the potential liability of basically condemning a property by stating a sinkhole is present and that is what would happen. No geotech firm will guarantee they can stop a sinkhole so the property and oftentimes, adjacent properties are now worthless. No course will qualify an inspector to properly evaluate a sinkhole and these inspections are way off target. If there is a void at the foundation, report it as such and HI’s do this without the legal ramifications of defining it as a sinkhole unless we add to the SOP: HI will take shovel in hand and commence digging; if after 4 hrs and 26 ft bls they have not disappeared, it is not a sinkhole and should be reported as a Big Void in soil at structure. If inspector does not reappear, they are relieved of necessity to provide a written report.

As a Div 1 Contractor as well…**I would not touch this with a ten foot shovel!
Please defer the cherry picking insurance company to a Geotechnical & Environmental Solutions type company and let them hang on the hook!