Unsatisfied Customer

I want to get some feedback on an issue. I performed an inspection a few months ago and confirmed the A/C system to be operable with no visible deficiencies. I was recently contacted by the Realtor and informed me the home owner had an HVAC technician servicing the system and determined the size of the coil in the evaporator was not compatible with the A/C unit which caused the system to fail and cost him about $4,000. The HVAC technician also told the homeowner the home inspector should have discovered this.

I quickly copied and pasted the section in the InterNACHI Standards of Practice related to this matter which absolves me from any negligence. The homeowner is not satisfied and is riding the Realtor because he referred me. The Realtor asked me to refund the price of the inspection as act of good faith. I would normally tell them to pound sand, however, this particular Realtor has referred me a substantial amount work over the years. $310.00 is the amount of the refund.

Any thoughts?

Tell the realtor to contact the company that installed the a/c unit and a-coil. See what their explanation is. How old was the unit?


The Ac guys isn’t a home inspector.

The state of Florida requires me to provide the clients with my license and scope of inspection.
I would advise , if licensed to sent the client your license and the SOP prior to doing the inspect. I won’t leave the office until I have this confirmation that the client has received this info.
It has been a lifesaver for me a couple of time.

This is what I send.

To : Date:
Inspection of :
Inspection Date and Time :

Please reply acknowledging that you have received these documents.
To comply with Florida Home Inspection Disclosure Statutes 468.8321.
“468.8321 Disclosures.—Prior to contracting for or commencing a home inspection, a home inspector shall provide to the consumer a copy of his or her license to practice home inspection services in this state and a written disclosure that contains the scope and any exclusions of the home inspection.”

I have attached to this email message the following documents.

  1. Florida Home Inspector License
  2. Standards of Practice for Performing a General Home Inspection (Scope & Exclusions)

Payment is due at the time of inspection unless other arrangements have been made.
If you have any questions please feel free to give me a call 386-454-1584
Thanks For choosing 1st Pro Inspection
Roy Lewis

8 to 10 Yrs.

I bet the AC guy scammed him. Without being there during the discovery and repair phase, I won’t give a penny. What else an you do that with?

Ummmm. I bought a battery at your store and it was bad so I went somewhere else and bought another. I want my money back!

Sir, do you have the battery? …no
Do you have proof the battery was bad?..no
Do you have anything besides persons word who financially benefits from this " finding"?..no

Who in the hell pays $4000 for a repair?.. It’s all BS I wouldn’t pay a penny…

I have to agree with Russ, if theres a “missed item” they need to give you an opportunity to come look at it before someone removes it.

Also, AC guys are notorious for railroading folks into replacing systems/components that don’t need it. That price sounds a bit steep as well. Not ALL HVAC guys, certainly but there are loads of scam artists in that field because its easy to do. The client doesn’t typically know what they are looking at or looking for, the whole process might as well be magic to most home owners.

My contract has a clause where if something like this happens they must invite me back before repairs are made or they are on their own.

And after a few months…Gees ! That’s laughable.
An Inspection is a photo at the time.

Excellent Post! I’m 100% agreement with you!

My thoughts are that the buyer got “scammed” by the HVAC salesperson. I don’t believe that you are under any "Legal" obligation to do anything in this matter.

Ask him if he really, and I mean really believes that this AC unit would work 8 to 10 years with the coil that was incompatible to this unit!

You might want to sit down and “put pencil to paper” and calculate how much business this Real Estate Agent has sent your way. Is it worth it to lose him as a client? Are you sure that you are going to “lose him as a client”?

PS: Do a “cut and paste” of some of our comments and send them to your Real Estate Agent.
Ask him to decide if you have any “guilt” and/or fault in this matter. If he says that you are “guilty” and are liable then I would “cut him off” and not use him again. Why? Because he will see you as a “Cash Cow” that will buckle under any pressure and he will see that he can “nickel and dime you to death” now and in the future.

I hope this helps!:nachi:

Back up the truck fellas.

How do you have any idea that $4,000 isn’t a legitimate quote?

You don’t know what was done based on the OP.

There is no evaporator for a home, That is worth $4000.

That wasn’t the point. I know that.

What was the scope of the work?

Did it include a new condensing unit as well?

We are home inspectors not seers.

the home owner had an HVAC technician servicing the system and determined the size of the coil in the evaporator was not compatible with the A/C unit
I find it hard to believe it would make the system fail, not working properly. Maybe failing. No ,He was probably a Russian air conditioning guy( Putin Heat and Air)

Johnny here is another scenario and always remember it. It will come in handy one day…

Here is what happened to me about 4-5 years ago…

Lady moves in and within a week her 20 year old clothes washer fails and she is fit to be tied! She admitted to using it previously without a glitch but now its all my fault. My company sucks they do not stand behind their work! Then she proceeded to call the Realtor, the Broker, the local Realtor board…anyone who would listen.

I told them I am not at fault but here is what I am going to do as a gesture of goodwill. I am going to replace the wash machine! OMG…Russ, your the best, this lady is a total PITA…

Know how I replaced it? I went to the seedy side of town, found a 20 year old washing machine that was IDENTICAL to hers, had it sanded and painted with appliance paint and brought it to her house! She was so damn mad she couldn’t see straight!

I then told her that I specifically told her I was going to replace her washing machine and that is EXACTLY what I did!

Screw them, they want to turn a 10 year old AC into a “NEW” one…before that ever happened I would take the 10 year old one from my house and install in there and put the new one at my house…

I didn’t say he was not ripped of. Maybe he was. Maybe he wasn’t.

But Hensell declaring that with no information tells you more about him than what really happened.

Johnny, start by taking this crap off of your website! in this day and age we all know what gets inspected. You give the impression that you do major analysis by conducting major mechanical system inspections and HVAC systems. If you are not certified by the EPA, that statement is a flat out misrepresentation.

Everybody does it, and everybody will get screwed because of it.

Where did you come up with $310? If you go in half with the realtor it’s $2000.

Don’t play the limitation of liability game here.
You have been playing the “I’m like all the other inspectors” game and take a look at where you’re sitting.

Stick with your SOP andall the fine details that go along with it, such as being called back in an appropriate time, ability to look at the situation before the repair, ability to negotiate an informal settlement.

You should have had the option to repair the situation for the client before he just took the word of the HVAC guy who is operating outside his bounds.

Request in writing the specifics as to why the equipment failed and all equipment nomenclature so that you can do your own investigation. Outdoor units get changed out without changing out the air handler unit all the time. This voids the warranty on new equipment, but it doesn’t cause the equipment to fail. It will reduce its capacity to operate to specification.

Do everything in writing and keep your mouth closed.
if everything is spelled out in your inspection agreement, put it back into his court to explain why he didn’t follow the agreement. No talk about being right or wrong. Just collect the facts and answers.

I like it when Mikey stalks me…makes me feel all sexy inside

Is wild uninformed conjecture your normal style?

Awww Mikey there you are again… You know how to make a fat guy feel wanted and special. I do not swing that way, but its OK if you do.

Thanks Mikey…just when I wasn’t feeling sexy anymore, you stalk me…thanks buddy!

It’s OK Rusty.

I’m sure you are good at finding some “companionship” for the evening on some street corner or other.

As for diagnosing the cost to cure based on incomplete info not so much. :wink: