Property Condition Assessment with NACHI SOP

Ok, still looking though multiple threads on this forum, Googling for the past couple of days, I see that the ASTM E2018-08 Standard doesn’t seem like a standard for a commercial building inspection just kind of a guide.

My questions is when it comes to Cost to Remedy which in the NACHI COMSOP

7.12 Cost to Remedy
The inspector is not required to provide repair estimates or opinions of costs to remedy. The inspector may offer opinions about such costs as a courtesy, but the offering of these opinions is outside the scope of a commercial inspection.
Most PCA’s will need this included in the report. It seems like a PCA would be for someone who is getting a loan through the bank and the bank wants to see how much risk the customer is getting the loan for.

Does anybody out there who does PCA’s use the NACHI COM SOP for their PCA’s and does not provide a cost to remedy or a 1-10 year cost table, I and starting to further market my commercial inspections and just kind of want to get an idea. I have experience in these types of buildings and not afraid of the cost to remedy, just kinda don’t want to get involve with this as I would be recommending the client to get a couple of quotes from a licensed contractor.

Thanks guys and Merry Christmas :smiley:

Correct, despite its title, ASTM E2018-08 is not a commercial inspection standard of practice. It’s as you said: “kind of a guide” and a crappy guide at that, one you wouldn’t want to use.

Anyway, with InterNACHI’s ComSop, you can give repair estimates (as a courtesy), you just don’t want those estimates to be part of the bargained-for report. In other words, you don’t want to HAVE to do them. Hence www.nachi.org/comsop.htm 7.12 as you referenced:

The International Standards of Practice for Inspecting Commercial Properties is a beautiful thing.

Generally speaking, I only use the COMSOP for small commercial (mom and pop) jobs. Large Commercial and Industrial clients insist on ASTM. ASTM is the way it is because the client and the inspector must create a SCOPE OF INSPECTION for every project. NO two commercial jobs are the same. This is NOT residential, unlike many HI’s like to think. If you want to be a Professional Commercial Inspector, you will need to step up to the plate and operate as one.

Jeffrey, thank you this sums it up better for me. I know with these types of buildings I always ask the client what they would like inspected, to build a scope of work for the client. So far I haven’t been asked to use this form for all my commercial inspections I have completed.

No problemo’!

And before Nick jumps back in here and jumps my chit…

COMSOP is InterNACHI. How many of your clients ever heard of InterNACHI?

NOT saying that there isn’t a place for COMSOP, just that it IS NOT (outside of Boulder, Co) an accepted standard in the PCA world.

ASTM relates to STANDARDS
COMSOP relates to SOP (thus the name)

HUGE difference.

The International Standards of Practice for Inspecting Commercial Properties uses a Scope of Work document that you and your client agree to. Otherwise, it would be useless. Every commercial inspection I do is totally different from all others. See 4.3.

InterNACHI’s ComSop in hard copy is our 2nd best-selling book because most commercial inspectors give it out with every inspection they do. It also includes a “document pack” with everything you need to inspect damn near anything.

It’s a beautiful thing. You could use it to inspect everything from a self-storage facility to a yacht. Which is why it is so popular.

That and the fact that it is built into the inspection industry’s software. HIP has it built in. HomeGauge does too.

That and the largest inspection association in the world recommends it solely.

That and it is the basis (sole commercial SOP) for the most governmentally-approved commercial inspection course in existence including 20 states that approve it for home inspection CE.

That and the U.S. military uses it.

That and the course it is based on is ICC approved.

That and… well, you get the idea. There are many reasons it is super popular. I honestly have no idea how I used to do commercial inspections before having ComSop and the document pack.

Everyone asks for ASTM E2018. Even the Chinese make sure the proposals and reliance both state ASTM E2018. The only people that have never asked me for E2018 are the mom and pop folks that buy small commercial buildings, but I guarantee you that their lender is going out for their own PCA report for the property from their own supplier, and it’s per ASTM E2018.

Also, a commercial lender would be pretty miffed if your report didn’t include a) immediate repair costs, and b) a reserve table with inflation and a specified term.

None of my clients are banks (maybe that’s the difference). I only work for commercial property investors/buyers. I also do all the inspections for two commercial property investment clubs and they finance every deal. I use www.nachi.org/comsop.htm on every one and that’s why they use me exclusively.

Commercial inspections are the only type of inspection I do and I’ve done them for a decade now. Not once in my career have I ever given written repair estimates. Some clients ask me how much I think something is going to cost to fix. I tell them what I think. But I never put it into the written report and that’s never been an issue… perhaps because my clients aren’t banks, they are investors/buyers. My clients can send the reports around to contractors to get bids if they like.

I’m also often asked (by HOAs) to do reserve studies (which have nothing to do with ASTM’s SOP), and I have software for it (somewhere), but I never take that work. I find that it doesn’t pay very well and the HOAs are a pain because they have to vote on everything. They even have to vote on whether or not to pay me! So like banks, I just don’t work for HOAs either.

My business model is different than most because my time is so limited (I can only do 2 juicy commercial inspections per month at most). And so I only take the gravy and leave the mashed potatoes. I could never command the margins I do by working for banks, working for HOAs, giving repair estimates, or using that God-awful ASTM standard.

Furthermore, the ASTM standard of practice isn’t really a standard of practice. It lacks in every area, doesn’t say what is included, doesn’t say what isn’t, provides no checklists, and doesn’t include the necessary associated documents. It’s worthless to me and the way I run my inspection business.

And the last reason I don’t use the copyright-enforced ASTM standard is that ASTM doesn’t permit me (or anyone for that matter) to produce it for my client, include it with my report, or even link to it in an email. You have to pay ASTM for each use. LOL. They can jump in a lake.

I don’t think the lender segment is the delineating factor. I’m 49, and in all my time doing these, I’ve never written or desk-reviewed a PCA that didn’t have tables, be it lender or investor. It must be some other factor in play here. Even the big shops like Partner and EMG do cost tables and have E2018 in their reliance. Are you doing narrative reports, or more checklist- or bullet point-type reports.

I can PM you a link to a Partner report that’s on the internet, hence public domain. It’s the style of report I’m used to doing. The fee for this particular report was probably in the $8k-10k range, which is pretty average.

Narrative with photos based on the Scope of Work document. See Exhibit A of www.nachi.org/comsop.htm In other words, I only have my people look at what we both (client and I) agreed might lead to information that is likely to be worth more to my client than the cost of me collecting it. I never do a full commercial inspection, no one wants it, no one wants to pay for it, and it is silly to pay for information that is likely worth less than the cost of me acquiring it. See 4.3. of www.nachi.org/comsop.htm I then add in any checklists that I can. The checklists are in www.nachi.org/comsop at the bottom.

I never do costs. That’s a different profession, actually that’s many different professions. My clients can go get estimates from wherever they want. It’s a pain to get estimates and I just don’t see any margin in doing so.

Ben has been asking me to do a webinar on how to run a commercial inspection company. I’ll talk to him on Monday and do one.