State Control of HI Industry - Good or Bad?

Troy, I stand corrected and have deleted the post. I misread the liability requirement as if it refered to E&O. My apologies for the error.:oops:

No problem. I’m not sure what the stats are for lawsuits among those with and without E&O as I haven’t been able to find them anywhere, but the guy who took me out on several ride-alongs has done over 2000 inspections in the last 6 years without any lawsuits, and another friend of mine has done over 5000 in the last 14 years without any either. Both have on occasion given back their inspection fee when the client got testy, but only because keeping the fee in their minds was more trouble than it was worth. Both carry E&O but the friend with over 5000 has told me that he also is thinking about dropping it.

I don’t know why everyone gets bent around the corner on the issue of repairing what you inspect. I’ve heard some guys bash NAHI because their stds are written so that under certain conditions and if all parties are informed and consent - an inspector could repair something they inspected.

ASHI or NACHI standards don’t go that route. Most of us don’t want to repair stuff we’ve inspected due to the extra liability and some of the AR type clients we see, etc - BUT - if we did want to repair stuff all we’d have to do is do like many ASHI guys I’ve known over the years do, AND

“No I don’t do repairs - thats my wifes company (or sons company or brother-in-laws company, etc, etc)”.

Some must be pretty desperate to inspect then turn around and repair things, or recommend your spouses repair company. Sounds greety to me.

Dan - I don’t know what this has to do with legislation. Are you suggesting some in this regard?

Arizona is a licensed state. The competition is tough among the inspectors flooding the market…so tough that some inspectors are teaming with local news channels and using cameras and “pre-inspections” to setup unwitting victims.

Of note is this advice that one of these inspectors has included on the local channel’s website. The highlighted bold appears exactly as it does on that site.

You have it straight from the horse’s a s s.

For the whole enchilada, go to http://www.abc15.com/news/investigators/index_story.asp?did=31457

Emmanuel,

Do individuals in Texas buy so many Homes for their personal use that the “Buyer” would need a Standardized Report. To me it sounds more like the “Standardized Report” is for the benefit of the Realtors who wold be seeing many reports each year as opposed to the normal buyer who would only see ONE every few years.

I don’t think anybody has posted this yet. It’s a very interesting study to get the gist of. It gives substantial proof that there is no difference in the HI’s market when it comes to licensed HIs or unlicensed HIs.

com.state.oh.us/real/documents/2005.0001FinalPaper.pdf

Thanks for the link David.

This is what I have suspected for a long time, that licencing makes no difference in the market place. Seems much of the fears have been based on misinformation.

Exactly. So, other than a desire to turn more money and total control of your business over to the state, there is little else to be accomplished by licensing, it seems.

That is true but not necessarily a bad thing. The Texas standardized report only defines and places in a certain order those topics you would report on anyway. It does not dictate what you have to say about those topics nor is it a checklist. I think the standardization benefits everyone involved in the transaction.

James said:

How so? The amount you remit to the licencing board is likely not going to cost more than the price of admission to an association. Licencing in not a money maker, nor has it ever been designed to be a money maker the way I see it.

So…why struggle to achieve something that does not help the industry, does not help the consumer, and does not help you make money?

I was just pointing out that many States, supposedly to protect the consumer, actually pass laws that benefit special interest groups like Realtors more than they benefit the consumer. A home buyer is only going to purchase a Home every few years, he wouldn’t know if the Home Inspection Report was Standardized or not.

Another example of “Consumer Protection” is in Washington State where a Complete WDO Inspection is required on every structure involved in the sale, trade, or transfer of the property, but it is not Every Structure, it is only those which have Home Inspections, if the politcians were truly going to protect the consumer then they would have required Every Real Estate Transaction to have the same Complete WDO Inspection regardless of whether or not a Home Inspection was done, that was probably too big of a step for the Pest Control Industry to get pushed through, so they compromised by putting the responsibility of the WDO Report on Home Inspectors while they benefit from the referals we are required to make and the liability we are required to assume. All for the Benefit of the “Consumer”

[quote=lcapaul
Another example of “Consumer Protection” is in Washington State where a Complete WDO Inspection is required on every structure involved in the sale, trade, or transfer of the property, but it is not Every Structure, it is only those which have Home Inspections, if the politcians were truly going to protect the consumer then they would have required Every Real Estate Transaction to have the same Complete WDO Inspection regardless of whether or not a Home Inspection was done, that was probably too big of a step for the Pest Control Industry to get pushed through, so they compromised by putting the responsibility of the WDO Report on Home Inspectors while they benefit from the referals we are required to make and the liability we are required to assume. All for the Benefit of the “Consumer”[/quote]

Lewis,
Some people want to waive their right to a home inspection. I think they are crazy, but that’s their decision. If the buyer doesn’t want to purchase a home inspection why should they be forced to purchase a WDO inspection (which is just one part of inspecting the home).
If, on the other hand, a buyer wants to purchase a home inspection, why shouldn’t the state set a standard that includes a WDO report to protect it’s citizens from those who aren’t qualified to evaluate whether there is pest or rot damage, especially since not having a WDO inspection could potentially cost clients thousands of dollars in repairs.
And I know from experience that ***informed ***customers of home inspection services expect WDO inspections. In Oregon, we don’t have to do WDO inspections, but we have to state plainly on our contracts if we offer them, and if we do whether we charge an additional fee, or if the fee is included in the cost of the home inspection. So this issue always comes up when reviewing the contract with the client. Every client, once reading the clause, wants the WDO inspection. I’ve never had a client turn one down. They all insist on getting one.

Troy,
I don’t know how it is today but the VA used to require a Termite Inspection an all homes they financed, it shouldn’t be the State that requires them it should be left to the lending institutions, who in my opinion should make both WDO ahd Home Inspections Manditory, but its their choice.

Our SOP’s require us to report wood damage and conditions conducive to damage, alomost everything requried in the WA WDO Report, except the diagram and Identification of the Insect, is covered by our SOP’s, when we see such damgae we refer it to people who can Identify and TREAT the conditions, just like we do now, except that now we are foreced to assume more liability that should belong to the Pest Control Companies.

In Oregon the WDO Inspection is an ad on, you charge an additional fee for it, here in Washington it has been absorbed by most Home Inspectors into their HI Fee, which are no higher than in many areas where WDO is not required. If I could offer the WDO as an Additional Service and charge separately then it would make more sense to me.

My point is that Politcians and Special Interest groups hide behind “Portecting the Consumer”, while in reality they are benfiting themselves. When this WA Law first came up back in the Early90’s it was because of complaints by consumers against the Pest Control Industry not against Home Inspectors to “solve” the problem the Pest Control Industry, which is extremly powerful in Washington, got the State Legilature to pass the Liability of the initial WDO Inspection onto the shoulders of the Home Inspection Industry, which still is very small when compared to the Pest Control Industry. Now the Pest Control/Treament companies no longer have the liability or the costs of performing the WDO Inspection, now they have us Home Inpsectors who by Law have to perform those inspections and refer treatment to them.

I would have very little problem with the WSDA Law if it were more like Oregon, even if it required all Home Inspectors to be Licensed SPI’s the Home Inspection and the WDO Inspection should be separate and the buyer should have the option of waiving either or both and the HI should have the option of charging for both as separate inspections. I am licensed by the way.

As far as State Licensing, its inevitable, why not work as a group and try to get the best deal we can? What argument is there against the Licensing or Registaring of Home Inspectors that makes any sense? Contractors, Electricians, Plumbers, Roofers, Surveyors, Appraisers, Real Estate Agents all are required to be licensed/registared, bonded, and insured, there are State Laws or Codes that govern them all, what argument is there for not requiring the same of Home Inspectors that would make any sense to anyone other than a HOme Inspector

This also applies to home inspectors looking for “instant” credentials and/or reducing the field of competitors.

James,

I agree with you, except here in Washington the big push for HI LIcensing is coming from HI “Education” Vendors, not just HI’s looking to eliminate competition. If you read the first WA State HI Licensing proposal you’ll find that it is very “Educational” and limits the sources of required “education” to those pushing for the Law.

Licensing/Registration and State regulation is coming whether we like it or not, to me it makes more sense to work together to attempt to get a law we can live with instead of fighting to stop any law from being passed. In the past couple of years I have spoken with Legislators from two States about HI Licensing, its coming and it will be another “Consumer Protection” issue, how would you argue to the Politcians that HI’s should not be Regulated when every other trade involved in the construction and sale of Real Estate is already regulated? How would you argue to the other trades that we shouldn’t have to meet State requirements like they do?

This misbelief…that “licensing is inevitable” is a tool for the proponent of legislation. It keeps you from fighting legislation (the easier battle) and embroils you in a debate over “language”.

Thousands of hours in time and effort in developing language that you feel to be “fair” can be erased in seconds, at the stroke of a pen, in behind-closed-doors committee meetings where only the proponents’ paid lobbyists have access.

Then, you have to constantly monitor and pay (in time, effort and dollars) to ensure that the law is interpretted in the way it was intended.

All of this can be avoided…and the proponents know this…by having the industry control itself. Turning that power over to the state is a loss.

Hi James,

You asked:

I think it helps the industry because the industry does not appear to be able to regulate itself from a Canadian POV. Both adminitratively or as a benchmark to the home purchasers because the industry is fractured in Canada. Independent Inspectors, Nachi members, CAHPI members. Licencing is not trade restrictive because everyone who is a home inspector at time of licencing would be grandfathered. So at that point in time there is no competitive concerns the way I see it. It equalizes the field, but it doesn’t limit or restrict an inspector from gaining his livelihood. Licencing doesn’t restrict your right to market your services, just as licenced electricians aren’t restricted to marketing their services even though they are licenced.

Licencing considering the field we practice in and the fidiciuary responsibilities we are responsible for - licencing ensures and shows that the buck stops with the government not some self regulating body that couldn’t manage a flea circus if you get my drift.