Does anyone use a hatcam to record the entire inspection for legal defense reasons?

Just wondering if anyone runs a camera that automatically and periodically takes pictures while you are doing your normal home inspection, just so that you have those additional photos should you ever need them to defend a claim.

No, but I have been looking for a snap shot camera that I don’t have to power up every time I pull it out of my belt and power down every time I put it back. It just feels like a waste of time, but I can’t carry the silly thing powered up all of the time. I take 100+ photos per inspection so that can add up in terms of time.

Anybody got any solutions? It has to have a flash, zoom, and be durable too.

I take an average 300 shots as normal routine of all components inspected.
Before and after on things like thermostats.
Video takes up too much space.

I’m considering using TASER’s AXON body camera. 4 hours of high quality recording or 9 hours medium recording … just like they wear on COP’S.

Nick, are you planning on having CMI- or- CPI- hat cam’s for purchase at Inspector Outlet for $150.00?

Dr. Denton: We have perfected a mini-camera that fits right into your nose. All you have to do is press this button on your jacket and your elbow will record what your nose sees.

Maxwell Smart: Well, wouldn’t it be better if my nose recorded what my elbow sees?

Dr. Denton: No.

Maxwell Smart: No?

Dr. Denton: No.

Maxwell Smart: No.

Dr. Denton: Simply because in your elbow patch compartment there is a mini recorder plus everything else you might need. A mini-magnet, a mini-gun and a mini-condom.

Larrabee: I’m curious. What use do we have for a mini-magnet?

Dr. Denton: All you need to know is in your mini-manual which is in your other elbow patch compartment.



I think its a great idea. I recently was privy to a situation where it would have been helpful and the idea was considered as a fix to prevent said situation. The guy was a sub contractor for a local big box and the client accused him of stealing four beers out of his pantry. The sub has impeccable credentials and it was obvious he didn’t do it given all the circumstances. But that was an idea that occurred to me to prevent any he said, she said crap like that. Just a few days before I was looking at the GoPro display at the local bass pro shop and that’s what gave me the idea. The video from those things on the display is fantastic. Not sure of all the details of how they work though.
Turned out the accuser was a convicted sex offender with with a pending defamation suit against him and had already been convicted of defamation as well.

I also average over 300 photos per inspection, and frequently take photos of general areas where I may not see a defect. But normally I take photos of defects and areas of common defects. Just seems like you can’t CYA enough these days. Maybe just put it on the back of your head and advertise " I’ve got eyes in the back of my head" :slight_smile:

I as well, take 200+ photos and no notes.

Nick is onto something great here. We all use hundreds of photos but a video recording from start to finish is an excellent idea. I want to hear more Nick.

Or maybe just perform a professional, complete inspection and not rush. :wink:

But then you could also buy a meteor deflector and Apocalypse Insurance and “The Cone of Silence” and full hazardous material suits and carry Holy Water, garlic and crosses with you, and … and… and… :roll:

I do take photos of items, just as information, water heater, boiler, kitchen, bubbling Jacuzzi tub, there are some there to prove it worked, wasn’t leaking, etc…while I was there.

I cant for the life of me figure why I’d need 300 + pictures, or have the time to go through them. Do you inspect by photo? Just taking mostly pictures of defects, I cant see how you’d regularly break 75-100. Sure there’s the POS that has 1000’s of defects I guess, but 300 pics per inspection? seems very high. How many make the report? I only take a photo I intend to put in the report. All my pictures are published. Do you save them? If so what for? why not publish them all?

I’m not trying to pick a fight, really curious.

Go pro seems like a good match, small and durable, reasonable price.

Nick, there’s an inspector here locally that has for years touted he videotapes his entire inspection and mails it to the client on cd and stores the videos for perpetuity in case of any legal issues for the buyers. This is a very bad idea:

  1. The video size would be huge. I’m paying about $200 a year on MegaUpload for 5 terrabytes of storage, which will be fine for a few years. Imagine a huge video file to save for each inspection. Your storage costs would be huge and you’d better invest in your own servers stored somewhere locally and raise your prices
  2. Multi inspector firms would have to have and back up multiple videos of each inspector.
  3. How do you deliver this video to the client, it’s likely for a solo inspector to be 3 hours in length. Every uploaded a 3 minute HD video to Youtube? Takes like 30 minutes. Multiply that by 60. Can’t email it. Gonna have to mail it, now you’ve got shipping postage, cd, cd cases, labels, envelopes eating into your overhead for no reason.
  4. If your ace in the hole for obtaining clients is saying you’ll willingly wear a headcam or bodycam all inspection and videotape everything you do and say, I’m opining you aren’t elevating the industry as much as you are merely adding a ton more work and overhead for yourself for no reason.
    As Jeff Pope has often pointed out, you can’t take enough photos to cover each and every circumstance you encounter to refute claims. Like Mike above, I’m at around 75-80 if the house has alot of issues, thats more than enough. If this industry goes the route that we have to videotape everything we do on location and give that to a client along with a report, I’ll let you all bang your head against that wall and move on to bigger and better things.

I like the way you think your the only one that is making any sense :shock:

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Mike I to take 250,300+. As Marcel said no notes Example photo each side of home when you get to it same with rooms then you photo a defect on that side or room then you know what side or room hence your notes of what side or room, also a few maybe of a different angle if you feel you need to. Its digital so no big deal and I’ve had some extra photos from those angle that show things better. As far as reports when I show a defect I start with that side photo or room then the defect then there is no question. I never get calls saying they can’t find it (defect). This is how I do it any way.:wink:

I use body cam to protect me from Realtors who misinterpret everything ( I would say about 98%). But also for those occasional buyers who call in a year and a half after the inspection and claim a contractor said that I should have pointed something out. Yes it is always documented in report but the contractor has not read the report therefore he has wrongly convinced the buyer that I missed something and i should pay for it. Aha moment, I have proof in report as well as proof that I did visit that area of house.
I perform expert witness for several attorneys and the most common lawsuits I see is a Realtor has informed the client to sue the inspector or a contractor has said the inspector had missed this. But most of those trials get dismissed pretty quickly due to thorough inspectors. Several have body cams video presented due to the fact that the judge or arbitrator still are on buyers side (yes I am a trained observer and I witness the physical and emotional reactions of judges & juries to make that informed decision).
Therefore body cams are excellent back ups.

@gromicko I use the Venture Body Cam with the headset camera that plugs in to the body cam with a cord. Basically, anywhere that I am looking at is captured by video. It works really well.