Michigan Stay At Home Order

This question is for any fellow Michigan inspectors out there. Based on everything I have read and information from my attorney it appears that our function is not listed as critical. Of course this is a problem for those of us who depend on work to pay the bills, such as myself. Are any of you finding a way to continue to operate during this time that is shown to be a legal means to do so?

I suspect that even if inspections are allowed somehow the fact that Realtors are not allowed to have show houses, have open houses or operate in any way that includes actually going to a home things will simply dry up.

Turned one down for today and doing everything I can to be in compliance here in Northern Michigan.

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I am continuing to perform home inspections and exercising the precautions prescribed. Americans should not be denied the basic right of homeownership as some have sold their homes and have nowhere to shelter in place once the closing takes place. Others are moving to the area for jobs. Home inspection and real estate services are essential and should be exempt.

Stay Healthy…


I agree but under what verbiage are you operating pertaining to the order in place? What I mean is what exactly are you saying allows you to perform inspections without possible legal repercussions. If there’s something you see in the order that you believe allows us to inspect please share it because I will also operate under the information.

We should not be told we can’t work and pay our bills especially when there has been no help offered to those of us who need to pay bills.

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I am operating under my understanding of the shelter in place order along with the fact that other states have allowed home inspections and taking some risks I suppose. It is a risk I am willing to take considering the economic impacts on my business and family, not just the rights of others involved, but my right to life and liberty.

For wording that I am using under the order, I am using this statement, "operations necessary to enable transactions that support the work of a business’s or operation’s critical infrastructure workers,”

There is only myself, the agent and usually one or two clients which allows us to maintain social distance. I do not feel we are doing more to risk exposure than going to the grocery store. I also do not believe the local police are out there looking for violations unless you were in obvious violation.

Long and short, taking a risk and counting the cost…

I emailed Nick Gromicko asking about InterNACHI’s looking at advocating that we are added to the exempt services here in Michigan if that is possible.


Right on! I’m curious what Nick will say. Maybe have something on hand that you can show if you get called out on it!

“Critical Infrastructure” I think is the key…Being able to prove that our function relates to that is the problem. Good luck to you and I hope this all blows over by April 14th.

Good man, Scott. That’s how I read the essential and non-essential workers, too.

It is a pain to not be able to pay bill, Vince, but possibly infecting others with out even knowing it is a reality that each of us has to live with, for the time being…at least until the 13th of April, according to our governor. And the fines are not cheap, either.

Stay safe for your family and for all of us living together…please.

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I respectfully disagree. While maintaining safety for our neighbors is very important as we navigate through life, taking more care to do so than is reasonable is not necessary. Consider how many people are going to the grocery store to get those necessary items to exist. In a grocery store there are hundreds of people daily entering and exiting throughout the course of the day, not all wearing gloves or being as cautious as they should. They are potentially leaving behind germs, sharing germs on a much higher level.

People do not normally buy homes for the fun of it. They are moving because of work, life changes beyond their control, their homes have sold and have to be out soon. We should not be attempting to stop their ability to find shelter to be in place at to decrease the risk of the spread of coronavirus. The interactions required for real estate transaction from beginning to end are less than getting groceries or completing other allowed activities.

Performing a home inspection can be done by the inspector alone. Even when the realtor, inspector and one or two adults are in the home allows for safe interaction, social distancing and using gloves, cleaners etc to leave a safe home for the sellers.


Mark Melton


Respectfully, Mark, you are a free man to do as you see fit.

If I was not retired, I may look at it differently, I don’t know.

Carry on…safely.

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I absolutely respect what you are saying, but then you are not leaving your home at all? No groceries, no gas, no friends, no relatives coming over, no leaving your home at all? If I believed I was posing a risk to my clients, sellers or realtors, I would not go.

Because during an inspection we are aware and taking precautions… very few people, distancing, wearing gloves, masks, I believe our activity is less risky. How would we be infecting others? More risk of doing that doing almost anything in public. Shelter is less important than eating? Where should these people go between homes? Their parents? The more at risk population… or their friends? Potentially infect their kids? A shelter where people are more apt to have the disease?

{Somewhat Separate Rant - There is an axiom in medicine, the benefit has to outweigh the risk… Sheltering in place potentially has many greater risks than the course of the disease. People without work are more likely to become alcoholics, drug users, commit crimes, hurt themselves or others. Look up those stats. These changes in human behavior are exponential because they affect their children, which in turn affects their children. Herd immunity is also short circuited. This is a complex issue which none of us, including virologists fully understand.}

At any rate, I appreciate your respectful communication and I wish you the very best in all of your endeavors and hope for your continued health.


Mark Melton, CPI


We stocked up a few days ago and could last 1-2 months if needed. We take walks in the thousands of acres of state land out our door and abide by what the governor laid out, as best as we understand it. This can live for 9 days on a surface before someone touches it. I’m a little older, lost our only daughter one year ago unexpectedly and want to beat my maternal grandmother’s record of 99 years and 11 months. LOL. So, maybe we are more cautious than some others but I am working on something that this down time is perfect for. So, for me it is a win-win.

And the same to you, Mark.


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Thanks, Vince! :smile:

For what it’s worth, We are shut down. To me it’s clear that to do inspection would be a violation of the Governors orders. It was a tough decision because I have two other full inspectors and a client care coordinator that I had to lay off.

The loss of income will hurt. Hopefully the stimulus package will help.

I’m pretty active on social media in the counties where I work and I think inspectors continuing to work could experience a back lash when thing return to normal.


My understanding is that the MI Association of Realtors is waiting for clarification on what a “real estate service employee” is. Currently appraisers and title companies are still allowed to conduct business under the stay-at-home order. My guess is that home inspectors will not be given the same consideration since there are no licensing/certification requirements in MI.

In order for us to be relevant, houses need to be shown. If the agents can’t show houses people will be less likely to buy right now. Any verbiage that would benefit us would need to include a lift on real estate overall.

Aside from deals that were already in process prior to the order I don’t know that a whole lot is going on right now. I’ve turned away a handful of buyers over the past two days but they were in fact already in the buying process.

I agree regarding future home sales. My concern is regarding the inspections in the works. The stay at home order came pretty quick and inspections were already scheduled. I would like to complete them without the possibility of a $500 fine hanging over my head because some neighbor wanted to be a “good” citizen and report me.

I agree Mark. We actually had an inspector out of Flushing area take a job from us that was on the books. We have been able to reschedule most inspections starting April 14. Let’s hope we can all get back to work as normal then. The risk is not worth it, and inspectors who think they are above the law need to rethink how they are affecting the entire community. I hope realtors are taking note of who us good guys are!

Sidenote- what’s an ASHI guy doing on here? LOL

Nice to hear from you again on our forum Mark Schild . Hope to see you more. :smile: