Pictures after an inspection

Quick question for everyone. After you do a home inspection what does everyone do with the pictures? should I keep them on my computer for a certain amount of time? or just erase them?

Keep then as well as the report on a external drive.


Use a cloud drive they’re free, destroy all over five years old or whatever your state requires. You can always say your hard drive crashed if things turn strange. :man_superhero:


After 3 months I transfer the pictures and reports to a memory stick. I also keep a table of contents that I note any unusual defects, construction, etc. just for my own reference.

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Delete them.


thank you everyone for your answers.

I keep all the pictures, emails and reports; I still have them all from my first inspection of 20 years ago on an external HD.

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Keep all pictures, reports, and correspondence.

At the end of the year, everything gets archived to an external drive.

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Morning, Randy.
I save all photos for prosperity, the state of being prosperous.
I have a three terabit HDD in my PC cabinet. As well, I have 17 Terabits in cloud storage for under $20 dollars Canadian. That would be ><$14 dollars US.
Once a HDD is full I label it, place the hard drive in my office desk, for prosperity, and install another 3 terabit HDD although I am considering using an SSD and trying it out now on a 1 terabit SSD saving ><50% for other storage.

Prosperity you say, Mr. Young?
Randy, Merit less claims remove prosperity.
Answer clients questions makes you prosperous:grinning:
Defending oneself from Meritless claims makes you prosperous:grinning:

Retaining Joe Ferry, The Home Inspection Layer, is just one way of retaining your prosperity.

Randy, as well as other CPI professionals. Consider Joe Ferry’s strategic response to unmeritorious claims. A powerful go-to market tool that stops professional threats in their tracks is your best offence to retaining the prosperity we all work so hard on retaining.

Good luck with all your home inspection endeavors, Randy.
Robert Young

PS: When you talk with Joe or someone representing his firm. Tell them, Robert Young in Montreal Canada sends him and his family his best regards.


(B) Every licensed home inspector shall retain for a period of five years the original or a true copy of each written contract for the licensee’s services relating to home inspection work, all home inspection reports, and all work file documentation and data assembled in preparing those reports. The retention period begins on the date the report is submitted to the client unless, prior to expiration of the retention period, the licensee is notified that the services or report is the subject of or is otherwise involved in pending investigation or litigation, in which case the retention period begins on the date of final disposition of the litigation.



Great for educational purpose. Often build them into my education courses or presentation workshops.

The nice thing about using HIP software is that it stores all of your reports for a period of 5 years once you upload it to the cloud. Though as I replied before I also keep them on a memory stick. (just me being anal-retentive!)

With nearly 20 years of inspecting, I keep and store exactly ZERO pictures. Every picture I take goes into the report or simply gets deleted.

Photos are intended to be used as a record of conditions. As such, they should be included in the report. If it’s a “reference” picture that you’ll use to look something up later, it should either go into the report or be deleted. There is no reason to keep photos on “the cloud” or on an external drive since they are already in the report.


As an aside, I sometimes get called to provide an insurance report shortly after the primary inspection. These insurance reports require a set of photos that don’t normally go into the main report, so I capture them and save them separately for future use. I resize them, and store them locally.

Those saved pictures saved my ass a few time…so I’ll keep saving them thank you.

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I concur, Marcel. Useful during several client discussions, as witness of fact or expert witness.

You said the attic hatch was blocked.
You never ran the washing machining.
You never looked under the sink for leaks.
I do not recall you going in the attic.
No mention of oil filler and vent tubes.

Want me to go on, LOL.

Well, that’s certainly one school of thought. However, I would bet dollars to doughnuts that had those pictures already been the report, there would have been no need to “save your ass.”

And that’s really my point. If the picture is worth taking (read: if the picture might one day “save your ass”), it probably belongs in the report, no?

Perfect example, Robert! Thanks!

Pictures of all these potentials can easily be included in your report. Hence, no need to “save your ass…”

And I’ll be the first to admit - I was a long time proponent of including as few photos as possible. In fact, for many years I only included photos of defects.

With the new tech available, pictures are no longer a burden to include in the report (assuming you’re using a 21st century app/software) and space/file-size is almost irrelevant.

I now take many, many more photos and videos than ever before - defects, functional components, reference shots, location photos, overall photos, whatever. All of which are included in the report.

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You are right but 100+ pictures in a report would not look very professional in my opinion, especially pictures of a home filled with personal belongings.

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