Originally Posted By: Chris Morrell
This post was automatically imported from our archived forum.
I’m sort of jumping into this topic without reading all of it. So if I repeat anything someone else said, deal with it.
Like others have said, you may get a few dozen inspections from the web a year, a couple from the yellow pages, et cetera. Your best bet is to leave a lasting (good) impression on everyone attending the inspection.
The notepad thing is a great idea -- I use free notepads for everything. If you give 'em to the seller, or your clients, they'll pass 'em around and you'll get free advertising. Someone might notice your name, and ask them about you. If you left a good impression, you might get a deal.
In terms of dress, I know that the most professional look I've seen is a white button-up shirt (short or long for season), comfortable jeans or khakis, and nice shoes for outside/slippers for inside. People really dig the slippers. It's also a good idea to wear a clean toolbelt with some outlet/gfci testers, a screwdriver or two, a flashlight, and any other tool that you use a lot. This is very practical, and gives you the feel of a "real" inspector.
Another thing to distinguish yourself is to charge higher prices. Make an effort to perform outstanding inspections, and charge $50-60 more than your competition for it. Use a digital camera and laptop, and produce the reports on-site. Answer everyone's questions fully, and take the time to explain anything in the report they don't understand. This will again, really impress people. As for the higher prices -- explain to people why you charge them, and ask them if they really want to go cheap on something like a home inspection. If they can't afford a few hundred bucks for your extraordinarily valuable services, can they really afford to buy a home?
If you show up for a home inspection well-dressed, with high-tech equipment and a good attitude, you'll be sure to impress everyone there. Leave a thank-you note with a custom notepad for the seller, and make sure everyone is happy when you walk out that door. Little things like handshakes can make a big difference -- wish them good luck. The phones will ring!
(And don't forget the slippers! "Look! They even wear slippers inside! These guys are professionals!")
I hope this was helpful,
Director of Information Technology