RE Salesman Sounds Off on "Deal Killers"


“Get the picture? You can hire this guy to do your inspections but you need to understand what you are dealing with”.

I thought RE’s never hire inspectors. It is the home buyers who do the hiring and write the check. This guy must have been burnt too many times. It amazes me that these used home commissioned sales people always complain about home inspectors, when they, themselves, do not understand their own business.

This salesman is wanting what is referred to in this article as a “balanced report”. Is that one of those crazy deals where you list the “good” with the “bad”? If the lack of a “balanced report” is what makes an inspector a deal killer…that would make me a prolific mass murderer.

Oh…just an amusing off topic side note that I absolutely have to share. I got some spam, today, from a local real estate salesman warning me to never hire a “part time” agent. I know a few of you will really appreciate that, as I did.

Inspection Balanced Summary:

“The roof leaks a tad during the rany season but Oh that view is to die for!”

I think I know which inspector he is talking about.
After hearing stories from both inspectors and Agents to go with some of the reviews I am of the opinion this guy goes overboard on minor issues and turns them in to a reason to run from the sale.
He also charges double which I know many of us like.
True that he is barred from many properties though I am not sure how they get away with that.
I got barred from all of a developers buildings once myself but that lasted about 45 minutes before I received apologies on the phone and returned.
The head of construction was arguing with me for calling out lack makeup air and lack of sealing shower stalls by arguing code.(yeah that story).
Back to subject imagine that Holmes guy showing up at the door with a sledge hammer at every inspection and throwing fits at every minor $5 item.
I get detailed myself but always explain to my clients verbally how big of a deal things are or are not.

Probably talking about an ASHI inspector / Tomacor (Tom Corbett). Tom has always marketed himself as the MOST expensive inspector in Chicago AND the pickiest.

Over 12 years ago he always bragged that 90% of his business was referrals from past customers. I’ve seen newspaper articles in CHI town where agents offered a buyer $5,000 off the price when they found out Corbet was coming - IF the buyer would use someone else.

I think each major market has room for 1-2 inspectors that HARD core market his way. Once you do, theres no going back / Agents have totally kissed you off - EVEN good ones.

The only way to stay in business if that rep is what you want is to be way over the top and flip your top 24 hours a day.
The guy must have veins popping out all over the place.

A house is what it is.

An accurate, thorough and unbiased report regarding its present condition…without any regard concerning the potential sale (or not)…is what we are paid to provide.

We are not there to sell the house…nor are we there to present it as being any worse than it is, either.

As a kid in the service 40 plus years ago, a group of us with an idle moment would pull out pictures of the girl we had back home and pass them around, proudly, among one another. The rule was, then, that no matter how ugly they might be…you said something complimentary…like…“Wow. She’s got a nice tooth.” or words to that effect.

A home inspection and report is not one of these types of occasions. One should never…ever…consider how anyone might respond to what is put in a report but should always, without fail, ensure that the information is relevant and accurate. What our client decides to do (or not) with that information is strictly his own business and has nothing at all to do with us…if we did our jobs right.

It is accurate and unbiased to state that driving a car can cause accidents but scaring people in to a psych ward so they are terrified to ever get in a car is another story.
One must recognize the difference.

It is not accurate and unbiased to “terrify” people.

One does not need to remove a splinter with an axe. On the same token, it is not the job of the home inspector to take bad information and “soften” it so that it does not scare the client away from the house.

The house is what it is. Describing the condition as it is…nothing more and nothing less…is what we are paid to do. What our client does with that information is none of our business and the possible outcome of the sale has no relevance to what or how we report that condition.

About 35 years ago, I tended bar in an NCO Club and the club manager explained the importance of measuring the amount of alcohol I put into a drink. It was not for economy since, for the most part, it was tax dollars that purchased the liquor and there was little focus on that at the time. It was for the good of the customer who might be counting his drinks to determine what was “enough” before he drove himself home. While, at that time, I was not accountable for his actions when he left the bar…I could cause him to make the wrong decision on the number of drinks to buy if I poured too much alcohol. I still had to give him a full shot, for that is what he paid for.

The same thing applies to my inspection. My client has paid for the facts. If I withhold any of them…or “sweeten” them up by adding tastier substitutes…I cheat him out of his full shot. If I over pour, I could cause him to make the wrong decision.

This is the art that accompanies the skill and it will vary from inspector to inspector. Neither extreme does any party to a real estate transaction a service.

While, at that time, I was not accountable for his actions when he left the bar…

Bars get sued for over serving all the time JB…*or should I say for serving the JB *:slight_smile:

Back to subject my comment was aimed at inspectors that do the opposite and call out minor easily fixed issues as deal breakers.

It is all in the tone of voice, facial expression,attitude,and once home writing the report it is in the adjectives used around the comments and summary section focus.
We can all report the same things and be totally different at the same time.

If it was art I would call it different textures.

A house is what it is. A report should reflect what the house is. What the client does with that information is none of the inspector’s business and should have no bearing on what he reports.

I always get a kick out of that. Inspectors listing the good aspects. Just screams of trying to satisfy the agent.

I’m all for fair reports but that has nothing to do with trying to sell the house

Like this?

Listing the good aspects? I list a ton of things working properly. Who doesn’t?

Alright I think you know what the difference is between saying the countertops are in good condition vs saying the home has beautiful granite countertops that compliment the kitchen decor.

Exactly. *(–-trashing-the-home-inspector/18843/).

Speaking as an inspector who has real estate salesmen who refer him to their clients (and am happy to accept the referrals) I still believe that, more times than not, a typical salesman is more likely to refer the inspector who they feel is less likely to cost them a sale and that a consumer is smart to do their own homework and NOT hire the inspector referred by their agent. When I hear salesmen refer to "their " home inspector…it makes me shiver…and I have made special requests to some who have referred me to never consider me as “their” inspector and to please not communicate that to a client.

I think that there should be a thick, black line drawn between our profession and that of those who profit from the sale of a building. When that line becomes blurred, we are asking for trouble.

This is what appears on the landing page of my web site:

If you want to know all of the nice features about the house or commercial building you are planning to buy, ask your real estate salesman. If you want to know the present condition of the structural, mechanical, electrical, plumbing and other aspects of the building…hire me…*