Critic of the Inspection Industry

This Friday 3/5/10 I am making a presentation to a group of agents about the home inspection industry. I polled about 25 agents and asked each of them the following. If you were to make one constuctive criticism about home inspectors or the inspection industry what would it be. There comments are below.

Finding Embellishment (number 1)
Fee for the inspection
They don’t put things back, i.e. dead bolt, close doors, drawers
Explanation of the issue is often not clear.
Recommendation is often not clear
Lack of continuity
They try to get involved in negotiations
No standard process, i.e. start on roof, then garage, then attic etc.
They should all have the same equipment.
Good inspectors scare the buyer to death.
No variety of services like pool, spa, termites etc.
Too many small points can kill the deal.
I had the same inspection company inspect the same house in the same week, with two different inspectors. You would have thought it was two different houses.

This is very interesting Gary. Thanks for posting.

Some of these appear to be valid criticism, while others appear to be ignorance about the industry.

" lack of continuity " sticks out to me. If you get the chance try to get some examples of the two extremes from your group.
The report itself ? Do some contain too many pictures, links, homeowner hints etc? ( after all this is for a real estate transaction not a homeowner " how to " book. )
Ask for examples of unneeded items that are being reported.
The answers you get could be interesting.

Is there some reason you care what they think?
Will you change the way you Inspect now?

I think after reading this I will now charge $99 and report less issues.
Since Good Inspectors scare the buyer, I will now be a bad Inspector.
I will now report on fewer issues’
No longer will I not be clear and recommend any contractors look further into an issue.
If an Agent tells them not to worry,because the association will take care of it I will not even mention that they are the association once they buy.
From now on I will check the door to make sure it is locked ,even though that is the only physical duty and Agent performs.

I have been doing it wrong this whole time.

They should have the same Equipment. So if we did that we be still using pads and paper. As the business evolves so does the tools, some do not keep up others do.


I think, as as a speaker representing the industry, I would seek those things that real estate salesman appreciate MOST about home inspectors and home inspections…and direct the gist of my talk toward those points.

We are our own worst enemy when it comes to highlighting our deficiencies…instead of our strengths…to the public.

80% of inspectors advertise how “bad” their competition is…rather than how well they can provide a service.

It is very disheartening and…until we change that…every critic of our profession will be fed all the ammunition they need.

Never saw an ad yet for Re Max ,that mentioned why they were better than Century 21.

Hi Gary…

I used to hear this kinda stuff all the time until I wised up and stopped asking Realtors questions…And stopped visiting their offices…:wink:

My clients love me. :smiley:

We all need to market a lot more on the internet and shy away from sucking up to realtors.Most of them hate Home Inspectors.I wish they would make it manitory to have a home inspection before closing.They all require a termite letter at closing why not the home inspection.If they would pass this there would be a shortage of hi.

John Cubit
JC Home Inspections
Manchester Tn.

Interesting, Thanks Gary

Most real estate salesmen in competitive markets do NOT hate inspectors, but they do not like the good inspectors. They prefer the newbie who is intimidated by his need for their business, is likely to miss many defects, and who can have the entire anger of a bad purchase re-directed toward him for missing the important defect.

Hells bells! We agree on something!:mrgreen:

Have not been in a RE office promoting for 5-6 years!! Only one or two in the previous 3-4! Only 10-15% tops of my referrals come from realtors.

I have put together a power point presentation and I have 30 minutes to speak. I am there to market my business but the presentation is based on the requirements of the SOP and why inspectors and agents often don’t see eye to eye.I agree with Jim Bushart that we do a poor job of representing the industry. My goal is to do better. I will post tomorrow afternoon and let you know how it went.

Good Luck Gary, I know it will be an excellent presentation. :smiley:

I asked a similar question recently and got this response from one Realtor.
“I prefer a detailed non alarmist inspector who has interaction with the buyer to let them know problem and maintenance items in a way that does not discourage them. In addition - we want inspector who provides printed report at conclusion of the job - done in 1 1/2 to 2 hours. Also it nice if at the end of the inspection when there are no issues - they verbally state that to the client and let them know they have purchased a good house. That’s it!”

How much of the commission do they usually share with this inspector after he is finished selling the house?

I made my presentation this morning and it went well. If you think the Realtors in your town are savvy to your SOP you may be suprised. I used some examples of diciplinary actions taken by the AZ BTR in my discussion and these agents were quite sympathetic.

The most interaction came when I talked about the questions I posed to the Home Inspectors Rules and Standards Committee in AZ about the liabilty of closing the main at the panel and opening the water shut off valve. They all understand the liabilty just as we do.