Ethics question on obstacle course

Originally Posted By: rking
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Joe Farsetta,


While taking the obstacle course I answered one question wrong.

I do not remember the exact wording but it went something like this:

"If you did an inspection four months ago on a home and the roof covering needed replacement, and your clients knew you were a roofer, but you did NOT offer to do the work, and they called you. Could you do the work?"

I answered No, and I was wrong because in the COE's apparently if a client calls us, without our offering our services, then it is alright to do the work.

I disagree with that completely. I believe that is just opening up the door for a load of trouble somewhere down the line.
How hard would it be for me the carpenter to leave a couple of my business cards on the counter in the house after I told them their deck was in dire straits and desperately needed repair? They see the card, call me and I do the work.
I never offered to do the work. But I get the work. Unbelievable!

I could even include a few of my carpentry cards in the front folder of my report to them. Again, I never offered to do the work, but I got the work.

In my ever so humble opinion this needs to be discussed amongst us all and changed if necessary.
Another organization forbids an inspector from performing any work on an inspected house for one year. It also prohibits an inspector from inspecting a house he/she has done work on or in in the past year.

Discussion time ladies and gentlemen!


--
Muskoka Home Inspections
"Wisdom is the Anticipation of the Consequences"
Steering Committee Member At Large

Originally Posted By: tgardner
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I took the EOC this am. Never got sent to the principal. I answered the questions relative to the text upon which I was being questioned.


In accordance with VA Law, quote

STANDARDS OF CONDUCT AND PRACTICE.
18 VAC 15-40-140. Conflict of interest.
A. The certificate holder shall not:
1. Design or perform repairs or modifications to a residential building on which he has performed a certified home inspection as a result of the findings of the certified home inspection within 12 months after the date he performed the certified home inspection, except in cases where the home inspector purchased the residence after he performed the inspection;
2. Perform a certified home inspection of a residential building upon which he has designed or performed repairs or modifications within the preceding 12 months;
3. Refer his client to another party to make repairs or modifications to a residential building on which he has performed a certified home inspection within the preceding 12 months

unquote

I have to abide by those rules because they are more restrictive than the NACHI rules. BUT I can test to the less restrictive rules and pass the EOC.

That said, this ETHICS discussion should be in the MEMBERS ONLY section

Best regards,

Tim Gardner


Originally Posted By: ltrower
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Robert,


I like you missed only one question and it was the same one you did. In Oklahoma the State Law that I have to follow says I can't do anything in the home for 12 months. I quess the question needs adjustment to the answer depending on what state you work in.

Lee Trower


Originally Posted By: Nick Gromicko
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Joe Farsetta please.


Nick


Originally Posted By: rking
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Tim,


It was with Nick's direction and blessing that I posted this thread here, and address it to Joe.

The COE is open to all, not just members.
this is another example, one of many, of the openness of NACHI.
We as members, with or without input from non-members, will have the final say on the definition that I have brought about for debate.
Indeed I would imagine that in jurisdictions that are currently licensed, the rules are as yours. But where there are no rules, it is left open to debate, and the wording of NACHI's COE's permit it as I have wrote it.

This posting is simply to get opinions, and have the wording of NACHI's COE's changed if it is deemed fit!


--
Muskoka Home Inspections
"Wisdom is the Anticipation of the Consequences"
Steering Committee Member At Large

Originally Posted By: jpope
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This was the only question I answered incorrectly also. After re-reading it, I felt I understood the concept (however, I may be wrong). Regardless, I think we would be walking a very fine line by choosing to make repairs on a home we recently inspected.



Jeff Pope


JPI Home Inspection Service


“At JPI, we’ll help you look better”


(661) 212-0738

Originally Posted By: Nick Gromicko
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We need Joe Farsetta.


Nick


Originally Posted By: Nick Gromicko
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, not contract. Can we reword A. 9. ?


http://www.nachi.org/code_of_ethics.htm

Nick


Originally Posted By: wwarner
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to repair (or leave your carpenters bus. card)a defect you found during an inspection. (Or tell the client that your cousin can fix the problem for them.) icon_twisted.gif


Now if the client were searching the yellow pages/ internet for a certified contractor and happened across your name again… and knowing what a


thourough and quality inspection you performed for them… were to call you up for completing the repairs (and you accept), this would be completely ethical since you did not outwardly or under the table offer those services to your client.


Does this make a little sense???

Bill


Originally Posted By: Blaine Wiley
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Never mind, my post didn’t make sense. EL Deleto


Originally Posted By: lfranklin
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I was going to post something like Bill. But he beat me to it icon_smile.gif


Originally Posted By: jfarsetta
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Okay…


The Ethics Committee really wrestled with this one, and here's the thought behind it. Let's say you were a home inspector, and also happened to be the only licensed electrical contractor for 50 miles. If the home required electrical repairs, and you happened to be the person the client CALLED (no solicitation), then you have not crossed the line.

However, if your own State's regulations prohibit working on an inspected property for 12 minths or for whatever time prescribed, you are obligated under the NACHI COE to follow the law.

The conflict of interest arises with the spectre of a HI calling out defects, then offering to repair the defects he or she has discovered. The NACHI COE clearly prohibits that practice, but allows the work to be performed by the contractor/HI, providing that the work was not solicited by them.

Most of our personal philosophies regarding this subject include a wider line in the sand. It is my policy to not work on any home I've inspected for 12 months. But that's me.

The biggest point to remember is that ETHICS CANNOT BE LEGISLATED. No rule that NACHI puts forth can prevent any truly unethical practice. Our COE can state anything we want, but it dont make it law. Ethical behavior comes from the heart; not a NACHI web page.

As an example, a local and prominent ASHI member calls out defects on every inspection, then tells the client how much his brother will charge to repair the defects he noted. Unethical? He's not actually performing the work, so in his eyes, the answer is "no". For me, however, I think his actions stink to high heaven. He is within the written word of his org's COE, so I guess he's okay, right? ![icon_wink.gif](upload://ssT9V5t45yjlgXqiFRXL04eXtqw.gif)

We tried to make the COE reasonable for all members to abide by. It makes sense, yet allows flexibility in some circumstances. BTW, the electrician example we used was from real life. One of the members of the committee was in just that position. Although he personally would never perform work on any residence he inspected, he wanted to ensure that someone else inthe same position could act.


--
Joe Farsetta

Illigitimi Non Carborundum
"Dont let the bastards grind you down..."

Originally Posted By: Guest
This post was automatically imported from our archived forum.



I’m at odds with this question.


In NY state, we have mandatory vehicle inspection laws. The inspecting stations are allowed to do the work that the vehicle needs to pass. The consumer is in no way obligated to to have that shop do the work. If you inspect the car and tell the client that something needs attention and he takes it elsewhere to be repaired, it’d better be really broken or you’re going to be in trouble. The industry polices itself in this manner.


The HI/repairman profession would also be self policing, because the client may actually call someone else to correct a defect that the HI pointed out.


The very nature of the question assumes that we couldn't be honest and ethical.

Here's the problem. Why open the profession to the type of inevitable scrutiny that this situation will force? Auto repair shops have one of the worst overall image problems of all the trades.

I'm for keeping the HI profession disassociated from other endeavors.
Be a contractor, fix rotted decks, do wiring or plumbing or what ever. Just don't do it on the same homes you inspect.

OK, I'm done for now, Chad Fabry





If you leave a business card that IS solicitation.


Originally Posted By: ecrofutt
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(Should be people here be deprived of a home inspection because there isn’t enough turnove to support a full-time HI.)


I'd open a lumber yard out back with an Ace Hardware in the back half of the building. Put a snow cone - hot dog - cotton candy trailer out by the street. Use part of the front of the building for a convenience store (including video rentals {should I include adult videos} & pizza & a utility (telephone-lights-water )payment acceptance) to go with the gas pumps out front. Hmmm, maybe a bead store, antique store or something esoteric like that in the rest of the front. Why, maybe even a laundromat (kind of takes care of itself w/ customers).

Let the wife work the front half and I'd do the back when I wasn't busy doing home inspections.

Heck, depending on the climate, for part of the year I could rent the space out front under the big shade tree to a mechanic as long as one of the branches was big enough to support a winch for lifting out motors.


--
Erby Crofutt
B4U Close Home Inspections
Georgetown, Kentucky

www.b4uclose.com

Originally Posted By: jpope
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gromicko wrote:
Also, most are using a pre inspection agreement, not contract. Can we reword A. 9. ?


How does an agreement differ from a contract? Mine specifically states - "This is intended to be a legally binding contract. Please read carefully."

Chad,

Quote:
If you leave a business card that IS solicitation.


Absolutely, without a doubt.


--
Jeff Pope
JPI Home Inspection Service
"At JPI, we'll help you look better"
(661) 212-0738

Originally Posted By: jfarsetta
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Erby,


Great reply. Thanks for stating what the "contract" really was. Contract and Agreement are synonymous. I purposely avioded this question, as the last time I gor into it, was with a guy named Richard Stanley, who refused to abide and demanded the COE be modified to his liking/thinking.


--
Joe Farsetta

Illigitimi Non Carborundum
"Dont let the bastards grind you down..."

Originally Posted By: jquinn
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Here’s another scenario: During the inspection you point out a defect and explain what may be required to rectify the problem. The client then asks if you “do that sort of work?”. Have you solicited them?


We have to maintain what those in the accounting profession (read: my wife) would refer to as "the appearance of objectivity"; you inspect the house , you don't work on it....simple!!

You have all heard of Enron haven't you ? ![nachi_sarcasm.gif](upload://6HQh6KbNiD73gqTNQInjrR2zeJw.gif) ![nachi_sarcasm.gif](upload://6HQh6KbNiD73gqTNQInjrR2zeJw.gif)

James Quinn
Sherlock home inspections inc.
Kitchener, Ontario, Canada


Originally Posted By: rking
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Joe & Erby,



OK. I see your point, but this time I am going to have to agree to disagree with both of you on the working issue.
I myself live in a rather rural area. I have a ten minute drive up or down a highway to get to a store and the city (town?) with populations under
10 000.
There are however a lot of trades people around, most not licensed but some very qualified.
I agree with the card on the counter or in report as solicitation without a doubt, and I think Joe said it right "Ethics cannot be legislated" and that is where I was going with my post. I mean could it be proven that Joe Blow Inspector did or did not leave a card? Then it comes down to a he said she said battle whereby a small change in the COE's would disallow that.

Oh well, I have to be shot down every now and then! Got it out of the way early this year!!


--
Muskoka Home Inspections
"Wisdom is the Anticipation of the Consequences"
Steering Committee Member At Large

Originally Posted By: Nick Gromicko
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without it being distilled to writing… a verbal agreement. A contract implies that the agreement is in writing.


Does not the COE Committee require a written contract, not just a mere agreement?

Is my thinking on this correct?

Nick


Originally Posted By: jquinn
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definitions from websters:


Agreement

a contract duly executed and legally binding

Contract

a binding agreement between two or more parties; especially: one legally enforceable


Sure seems like the same to me.

Picture this: you are being sued and you stand before the judge and say "But your honour, we didn't have a contract, we had an agreement" to which the judge will surely reply: "But of course, case dismissed !!"

![icon_razz.gif](upload://rytL63tLPMQHkufGmMVcuHnsuWJ.gif) ![icon_razz.gif](upload://rytL63tLPMQHkufGmMVcuHnsuWJ.gif) ![icon_razz.gif](upload://rytL63tLPMQHkufGmMVcuHnsuWJ.gif)


James Quinn
Sherlock home inspections inc.
Kitchener, Ontario, Canada