HI Reporting Software

I was wondering what reporting software is good. I was playing with InspectVue and HomeGauge demo versions. Both of which seem good.

However, I am leaning toward InspectVue - it seems to be set up more user friendly than HomeGauge. Plus - you can load it on your handheld which is a big plus.

The only thing is that the InspectVue demo is limited as to what you can do. Does anyone use this software and, if so, what is your opinion on it. I would hate to drop that kind of money and not like it.

Also, are there any others comparable to InspectVue or HomeGauge for less money?


We use Homeguage. No matter what software you decide to use, you
are going to have to tweak it to your liking. I know that Inspectvue
uses way to many disclaimers in the template. The Inspectors that
I know that use it have taken it and stipped it down to the bare bones
and then rebuilt it.
HomeGuage also came out with a handheld version. They do not charge
you a maintenance fee every year like InspectVue does and their tech
support it very helpful and ALWAYS answer the phones

Brian both are excellent software choices IMO. That said I currently use Inspectue and after setting it up the way I like, find it very easy to use. The limiting factor using the handheld devices is, the handheld devices:( . I can do the report faster on the laptop without using my Dell Axium (paper weight).:slight_smile:

You may be able to save some money with other software, but I still believe the two you mentioned are the best so far.

And you may find some of the disclaimers useful if you get an unruly client.

Very good to know. I didn’t realize that InspectVue charged a maintenance fee. What does that do - offer free upgrades? Does HomeGauge offer free upgrades or do you have to purchase the upgrade?

I agree with Dennis, and the option to upload the reports to HomeGauge and have them all readily accessible to view again when ever you want is great.

Your clients are stored, your agents are stored, you also have the option of “Locking” a report until payment is made, I could go on and on…The support folks are top notch, and their PDA version is available.

I agree on the Axim - I have had mine for about two years and the only thing I use if for is the GPS. Should have just bought a GPS system.

I’m not necessarily looking to save money - I am will to pay if the software is worth it. I am assuming the disclaimers are on both of these packages?

Thanks for the info.


Does this mean that HomeGauge stores your reports on their server and offer a link to the client to view them?

Yes Brian.

You can store as many as you want, they stay on their server for five years.

When the reports are uploaded a user-name and password is sent to the client.

My investors and realtors love it because they can view all their reports on the same page by logging in to HomeGauge with the same user-name and password 24/7.

I like that idea. I appreciate all the help. I will play around with the demos and see which one works best. I am now on the fence.

I have also heard people talking about the 3D software - but no matter how I try - I can’t get the demo link sent to my e-mail. Oh well, I guess that’s their loss.

Thanks again.

The disclaimers, to the extent that InspectVue uses, only come in InspectVue. It is a marketing ploy to scare Inspectors into thinking that
without the disclaimers and their software, you are going to be sued. But if you look at it, you basically disclaim everything that you inspect. Not my
idea of giving the customer a warm and fuzzy.
As far as the handheld goes, I field test one when I worked at another
company that used 3D. After the second time that the battery died on
me during an inspection I gave up that idea for good.
The last time that HG did an upgrade, they gave the upgrade to all current
version users for free. I know that they are coming out with another upgrade in the near future so you might want to talk to them to see what
their policy is going to be.
Hope this helps.

I’m a new registered owner of InspectVue. I see enough bugs to be concerned. Here’s an example: My narratives seem to “multiply” on their own. Sometimes when I modify a narrative, I later notice about 4 instances of the exact same narrative. They seem to have cloned each other. I select and delete 3 of the 4 and, voila, all 4 are gone before my very eyes. Tech support cannot explain why I have multiple instances of the same thing (they think it is “operator error”).

Some sloppy programming exits. For example: when doing an operation like copying files to your handheld, the progress bar goes to 100% and then just stops there. You get no confirmation the process completed successfully and the progress bar just stays at 100.

The program out of the box has duplication and redundancy. For example, you’ll see similar narratives in different categories. This leads to confusion and you wonder, “didn’t I just see that statement somewhere else?”.

I got some strange errors about narratives not existing (even though I was looking at them) and when you select them, the program crashes. When you try to delete them, the program crashes. The crashes do NOT give you a useful error code that you can report to tech. support. One of the fundamental techniques of programming is called “error trapping”. That is, you want to help the developer be able to identify what caused the crash. Useful code should be inserted to help determine where the error originated, but as far as I can tell, there is little to any error trapping in InspectVue.

Then, there is the issue of multiple narratives in different places. For example, you could have dozens of instances about outlet narratives (kitchens, living areas, bedrooms, bathrooms). If you change one, that doesn’t change them all. You then need to change all the other instances of the same narrative and it isn’t easy. You must delete the others and copy the one you just changed to all the other places and then re-sort the catagories, etc. Simply making one change to your outlet/receptacle narrative will require about an hour because you have to copy the changed file to all the other locations.

The program could benefit from being a true database instead of a text based application. That’s why changing one “record”, as stated above, doesn’t change them all.

Copying files to the memory card for use in a PDA can take hours! Unbelievable! Any other Windows application can copy/delete a similar amount of data to/from a memory card in minutes.

The method of program updating is rudimentary for today’s standards. It requires a lot of operator involvement instead of being more automated.

Then there are the annoyances. For example, the inspection report Table of Contents is at the VERY END of the report. That is NOT a table of contents. That’s called an index! You can’t change it however. Sentences break in the middle of pages. Lots of formatting stuff like that.

If you do buy it, you’ll spend **weeks **tweaking its text and layout and then you’ll experience issues like I described above, which you just have to live with because nobody can explain why you are having the problems.

InspectVue is due out with a major revision later this year I’m told by Porter Valley. You should wait on that revision in my view.

(My qualifications for this review include a BS in computer science and a former career as a software developer.)


Great post. That will sway my decision - especially since you have the new version. The problem with the software packages is that they all cost an arm and a leg - so if you don’t like it - you’re pretty much screwed.

Sounds like you should develop your own program and sell it - it looks like your qualified.

I appreciate the post though - very detailed and informative. I’ll let you know what I decide on and how it is (I finally got that e-mail from 3D to demo their software)

So hand helds (DELL Axium) suck then? OK. I was thinking about buying one for Homegauge. My thought was, once I tweak it to make it my own, I could just leave the laptop at the office and not worry about lugging it around.

Currently, if I run the inspection solo I bring my laptop and do it all onsite. If the seller, not the buyer, is present I take notes and do it at home. If buyer present, I take notes, give a verbal summary and send an email report that night.

However, if I had the handheld, I thought I could get a summary on site w/out having to walking back to the kitchen and typing.

Could I get some more feedback on the handhelds please?

Yea, they store it for 5 years. Really cool. However, AOL (which totally sucks by the way) will not always let Homegauge in. Meaning, you will have to call client, ask them to turn off virus settings and allow report to come in. Or you can just make a PDF and send as an attachment. This is only the case w/ AOL (which sucks by the way).

Hmmmm…Somebody hates AOL. The Dell AXIM is not a bad handheld - It does pretty much everything that any other handheld can do. I think the problem would be the typing onsite. You should probably buy one with the keyboard already installed at the bottom to save time - otherwise you will be using the stylus to type on the screen - which is not too easy as the letters are very small and it is easy to hit the wrong key.

I was planning on converting over to a PDA. The major disadvantage of using a PDA is that it was never meant to be able to print off of it. You can get 3rd party software to print, but it was never in Palm’s or MS’s original plans to give it that ability.

So, if you’re planning on doing onsite printing, a light weight laptop or tablet is probably the better alternative. I still use my Axim X51 to keep my calendar, quick notes, and contact lists. If I knew that I couldn’t print before I bought it, I’d gone with a $99 Palm Zire.

What is the opinion on Report Host? Is it in the same ball park with the big $ soft ware?

I recently purchased a Dell Axium and glad I did. it was taking way to long writing up the report, utilizing InspectExpress, after the inspection. Say 2 hours to write after a three hour inspection. With the PDA that time is now 45 minutes to about an hour, including adding pictures. Some like the notebook computers, some like PDAs. Go with what you are comfortable with.

I do not give report at end of inspection. I go to office, add the necessary detail and send via email as a pdf.

I’ve been using 3D for 4 years and love it. I can print onsite with my Ipaq or synch to my desktop, add pictures, create a PDF and deliver via the web my report. 3D also offers an office management module with gives me activity reports and does scheduling. They charge a modest fee for updates ($99 a year) and usually provide 2 updates a year.


I am new to the business and decided on Home Gauge. I find it very customizable, with many reporting options. Tech support is great, they have 10 people who work on the program, and like someone else said they answer the phone, i have never received a message when calling and the guys know their stuff.

I originally went with HG for their web services, including report downloads/storage and their online scheduling feature. I was impressed enough with that to give their software a serious look. Really great package all around.