Kansas HB 2315 Update

Here it is guys. I would like to hear some comments. Senator Karin Brownlee of Kansas just sent me this e-mail:

Mr. Farnsworth,
I apologize for not getting the info from the revisor turned around faster and back to you. Here is what Jason Long sent to me.

Mr. Bell is correct. Section 11 becomes effective on July 1, 2008 and prohibits home inspectors, as defined by the act, whether registered or not, from limiting their liability through the home inspection agreement
to less than $10,000. Neither Renae nor I recall any discussion among the conference committee members regarding the effective date of Section 11. Furthermore, it was my understanding that the board needed to be
appointed and organized before it could begin accepting registrations. So, the act needed to become effective on July 1, 2008, for organizational purposes even though registrations would not occur before July 1, 2009.

However, Mr. Farnsworth is incorrect in that the requirements that must be met for registration, including education, financial responsibility
and continued training, will not be imposed until the home inspector is required to register; July 1, 2009, in counties of 60,000 or more and
July 1, 2011 in all counties. Thus, the only requirements that arguably will be imposed on July 1, 2008, are those found in sections 9 and 11 of the bill.

I hope you will read again the sections that the revisor mentioned and realize that it is not as bad as you have suggested. Nonetheless, I am aware that you are very displeased with the legislation.

Karin Brownlee

Remember this is a previous post from Nick :mrgreen:

P.S. The law only prevents inspectors from unilaterally limiting their liability to an amount under $10,000.

The law doesn’t prevent YOUR CLIENTS from limiting YOUR liability to an amount under $10,000.

Just double your prices but offer an option to do the inspection at 1/2 price if the client agrees not to hold you responsible for more than twice the cost of the inspection or even $1. The law doesn’t hinder a consumer’s right to bargain with you (over price or services or liability), it only limits your ability to impose (on the consumer) a written-in limitation of liability unilaterally.

Nick, How are you coming on the new Kansas Inspection Agreement and Warranty?


With only 20 days left before the July 1st change we’re running out of time. The agreement shouldn’t be that difficult to author, but some legal checking should be done first. Secondly, reading the requirements and the 10K minimum limits, I would have to guess that a warranty program is not going to cut mustard. There is one option that can be taken to slow down and possibly toss this whole thing out the window and it will involve some deep pockets and an expert willing to take on challenge. I think Nick know’s what I mean.


But Paul, if we bring in that Yugoslavian sniper, where will we house him till he gets them all?? You know how much he eats - yuk!

I think the agents are getting warmed up early. Since last Wednesday I’ve had 4 different inspectors call and tell me their horror stories.

Things like: the dishwasher starts leaking in the middle of a cycle and the agent is yelling - you broke it, you can’t limit your liability now …

HB2315 Section 3 Item B; Examination of Kitchen type appliances and the condition and operation of are not included; or worded something like that.

Do not touch them:cool:

Turn in the agent and the agents broker to the new board. If the agent cannot be a professional, they should not be one. Turn them in !!! :shock:

I think the Kansas City Board of Realtors and Kansas Board of Realtors are trying to help notify their agents about the new law. I’ve seen articles from both groups in their newsletters talking about how they’ve finally got regulation of home inspectors. The articles also talk about how they worked toward this goal and pushed it for 9 years.

All the articles point out that although nothing starts before 2009, **the other aspects of the Bill are enforceable after 7/1/08. **Each article then goes on to point out that a home inspector can’t limit his liability to under $10,000 per transaction.

Its alnost embarrassing thinking about all the meetings I’ve set through listening to some lying sack of $hit realtor or some of their staff or officers spouting off about how they’re not trying to control or manipulate another industry - just help support us if thats what we want. Oh please!!

I have a credit card with a cap of $40,000. Wouldn’t that be good enough for the realtors/State of Kansas? It is greater than the $10,000.

Guess this means I will have to stay on my side of the border. Unless IR:D :smiley: Its not regulated

Is the Kansas inspectors going to steeply raise their prices because of this?
I know I would be, and I would point back at the bill when people ask me why.

You’d certainly hope so but there are always the group that don’t want to anger a realtor.

My guess is…those who are dependent upon the RE salesman who legislated their doom will continue their dependency until they are put out of business by virtue of their imposed $10,000 warranty.

The problem is…the licensing schools that will be opening up will be sending out enough temporary home inspectors to replace these guys at the rate (or higher) than they are falling out.

Raising rates to meet expenses in a licensed state is pretty difficult…except for the planet of Texas, where licensing has saved everyone from harm.

Sounds like there may be a case against the law, or perhaps with the behavior of some, with the *Federales…:wink: *

Send your houses to Texas and we will inspect them for you.
(Client pays for shipping both ways) :mrgreen:

It will just be a matter of time until all of this goes to a court somewhere in the state of Kansas. The only winners will be the attorneys. All we can do is hope that the real estate companies will be drained by the fees from their attorneys. It will happen. Just when and in what county, who knows, and which inspector will be involved we will not know until it happens. It will happen to some unsuspecting inspector, perhaps for no reason but to test the law, no matter what he puts into his pre-agreement, and his reports. It will not matter. Only that it will go to court, and soon.

No offense to anyone here, but I hope it is not me that has to go to court to fight this. I have this problem with stupid sh_t, and have a bad habit of telling people what I really think. I would probably end up in jail. I can’t believe that I could be responsible for something that a builder did or didn’t do, and covered it up. Same with a contractor, homeowner, Realtor, ect… That is just plain stupid. Did I mention that I think it is stupid? :stuck_out_tongue:

Guys -

Its already starting. In the past 2 weeks as you know, Luke Bell, KAR and KCRAR that I know of have sent newsletters, emails and held office meetings for Realtors all over the state saying basically - “Its taken us 9 years to get this pushed through, but we’ve got home inspectors regulated AND they can’t limit their liability to anything under $10,000 per inspection AND you can start making them do this 7/01/08 OR as soon as the Bill is recorded in the book”.

This allows Realtors, sellers, buyers, Builders, etc to try and drag the home inspector into paying for almost any perceived wrong (valid or otherwise) OR things that other parties have done or not done. AND this nightmare is already starting. This week, I’ve had calls from 4 other inspectors saying things like:

**Dan **- (1) I was right in the middle of an inspection and the dishwasher started leaking - the next day the listing agent called me and said her seller said its never done that before, so when I turned it on I must have done something to make it leak, and under this new Bill its my responsibility to pay for fixing the sellers leaky dishwasher; (2) Another inspector called and said when he went to put the garage door up, it went up half way and derailed. The seller called him later that day and told him that her realtor told her there was a new law and home inspectors had some sort of $10,000 warranty to pay for things like this, etc; (3) A third inspector said someone he did an inspection for about 11 months ago called and said this past week hes got a leak in his roof. The homeowner had a roofer out and it seems the builder (NOW out of business) cheated - the builder cut corners and used felt paper ONLY around the edges of the roof. So to fix the roof, they will have to tear the whole roof off AND put felt paper down AND reroof the house. Obviously a home inspector can’t see under the roof shingles, so why is the buyer calling the inspector - the builder is bankrupt AND vanished - the inspector is left behind AND the buyers realtor told them about the new Bill in Kansas that makes home inspectors liable for up to $10,000 per inspection (for their whopping big $275-$325 fee).

Its already apparent that some agents, buyers, sellers, etc will see this as a “$10,000 warranty, repair allowance, guaranty, etc”.

Yes - its already starting thanks to the fine efforts of the KAR and certain members of the KAREI group, combined with naive legislators listening to the lies we heard in the committee meetings. We may become a financial cushion for agents, sellers, builders or a buyer looking for a $$$ fix (regardless of whose fault). We’ll be paying $1,000 - $1,500 attorney retainers just to write defense letters for $300 inspections on MANY of the defective conditions in the sellers house or other parties problems.

The attorney’s that were consulted have said several things like: a) they think its illegal for the state to try and restrict 1 groups ability to legally contract with their customers - especially since the Kansas Appellate Court has ruled several times over the past 10 years that is is legal for ANY business to negotiate their liability (in time OR money) with their customers AND no other business or profession has been prevented from the contracting process - just inspectors; b) they think the difference in time for city / rural inspectors is discrimatory;** c)** in Kansas since engineering laws **EXCLUDE 1&2 family houses **AND the engineers were excluded from HB-2315 they are not under anyones jurisdiction NOR are they forced to NOT limit their liability, get insurance, etc AND can continue to do whatever they want with NO juristiction from the engineering board OR the home inspection board - more discrimination OR possibly **a state mandated RESTRAINT of TRADE. These are just a sample of what the attorneys came up with after reviewing HB-2315, as well as possibly tying the KAR into a Microsoft type affect on another profession. **They felt they can get an injunction on the Bill and put it into hearing before a Dictrict Court for rulings.

They also felt this might be of interest to the Justice Department or someone like the FBI, from the KAR’s aspect of interference or manipulation.

They think this would make a hell of a great media story - either locally or nationally for some enterprising investigative reporters. Kind of reminds one of the Alamo - 200 to 250 home inspectors fighting off 20,000 to 25,000 real estate agents in Kansas for the right to control their own profession. ESPECIALLY when those same real estate agents or **KAR **have been instrumental in fighting any type of state mandated building codes, code inspections, licensing of builders, OR mandatory consumer protection laws like radon testing or landlord safety checks on housing.

**However the attorneys want a $17,000 retainer to get started. **I’m told several groups are looking to see if any law firms would like to take this, and see who they can sue for $$$$$ IF the inspectors agree to give the attorneys 80% of whatever they can get from anybody OR any entity for ANY reason.

The attorney’s also suggest raising rates SIGNIFICANTLY in Kansas (like $100-$150 per inspection OR MORE) to help compensate for the extra liability. **AND **they suggest starting to **hammer everything **thats not 100% correct AND referring almost everything thats not 100% correct to “licensed contractors” for further review and analysis, AND to NOT inspect **NOR **even look at ANYTHING thats not required by the National Inspector Association you belong to **OR NOT **required by the state statutes (i.e. things like appliances, fireplace flues, furnace heat exchangers, etc).

As we all know, ALL national home inspector associations, exclude many things like appliances, fireplace flues, heat exchangers, etc. If they’re outside your National Standards, they’re outside the Kansas Home Inspector Law. So great - lets address them that way. At the current time most of us check most of these components for our clients anyway as a courtesy - **however **- under the new Kansas Law with $10,000 of liability, here’s what my insurance company and my company attorney have both suggested that we start doing to address these Kansas liability issues:

  1. Mr Inspector, how did the appliances work - they look really old. I don’t know Mrs Buyer, we don’t operate these anymore for Kansas homebuyers because of the $10,000 liability issue. If you were buying a house in Missouri we’d still do them as a courtesy, but since its in Kansas …

  2. Well Mr Inspector, is my fireplace flue clean - does it look OK to you. Gosh, Mr Buyer we don’t check these in Kansas anymore - the $10,000 liability thing that the Kansas Realtors pushed, you know. If you decide to buy a house in Missouri, we’ll be happy to look at them for you.

  3. Mr & Mrs homebuyer, there is a water stain on the ceiling under the 2nd floor bathroom. I’ve checked it with my moisture meter and its dry at this time, **BUT **there could be water damage **OR **a toxic mold inside the ceiling cavity where we can’t see AND we recommend removing the drywall prior to closing to examine the hidden areas AND we recommend a FULL mold test prior to closing. If we were in Missouri, we’d simply tell you there were old water stains that are dry at this time - we can’t see inside the walls - and monitor this in the future. Why do it the other way in Kansas? Its real simple - the Kansas $10,000 liability thing.

I think the Kansas home buyers are gonna start paying a lot more for a lot less AND getting a lot of referrals to get other inspections done.

Can’t do it any other way. The way the Kansas Realtors have influenced the Bill has seen to that. Whats very funny is as someone with a degree in Real Estate when I read the local Realtors own contracts, they’ve got so many “limits of liability” for themselves its a downright joke.

Other than that, nothing new out here in rural Kansas.

Dan, the solution to ASHI-pushed crappy legislation that continues to harm inspectors, is to find all those who support ASHI with their membership dues, and simply kill them.

I simply can’t understand why soon after ASHI-pushed crappy legislation passes, all these ASHI guys start complaining about how many inspectors the law is licensing, how their markets are deteriorating, how home inspection schools are popping up on every corner pumping out licensed inspectors by the hundreds, and how their liability has gone up.

Sleep with dogs, you get fleas.

Dan, why do you continue to financially support an organization that harms our industry? Isn’t the fact that ASHI has no entrance requirements (text book “diploma mill”) enough? Isn’t the “everyone-passes” NHIE enough? Isn’t creating crappy legislation enough? Isn’t tripling the number of competitors through licensing enough? Isn’t pushing for (and getting) legislation that raises your liability to cover Kansas agents enough?

What does it take for guys like you to stop killing us all with your poor choice in association financial support?

Do no evil.

Make sure at every chance you have fun with this bill. Always point back at the bill and at the Realtor at the same time.

Nick, please go back and edit post #18 again, while we know you are just kidding,(Hopefully) it looks real bad, and I’m sure it will be used against us.