What is a Home Maintenance Inspection?

Hi guys,
Expanding my business. I am interested in adding Home Maintenance Inspection to the services I offer, however I am having trouble finding out what this exactly is. Is there a particular format? Is there any type of standard for this? I see other inspectors charging a fraction of what a normal inspection costs.

You walk around the house and you look at stuff that’s happening that in the near future is going to cause a significant issue with the building.

This type of inspection as a way to get away from the home inspection law. Anyone can do it. Do not looking for “significant deficiencies” you’re looking for things that cause them.

You can consider it a preventative maintenance inspection.

Why the fraction of the cost? Because you don’t do anything but take a walk.

So, are you inferring that you ‘ignore’ any major concerns you may discover, as they are not ‘maintenance’ or ‘preventative’ concerns? :razz:

No, am am inferring that HI’s that sell this stuff can’t sell or conduct a real inspection…

I know, I know, It fills the gaps…

I don’t have gaps. So that is how I look at it. Just me.

I’m not against them, I just never ever did one.

LOL^^^. With over 12,000 inspections completed since October 15, 2001, I guess I don’t know how to “conduct a real inspection.”

MAINTENANCE inspections are just one of many inspections I offer. The others are BASIC, STANDARD, PREMIUM, TECH, RENT, DRIVE, LIST.

Most of my MAINTENANCE inspections are done 6-months after close of escrow. I do them to ensure that the home and its systems are responding well to the new owners. I do, however, market MAINTENANCE inspections to older, established neighborhoods where not too many sales occur each year. In order to find those neighborhoods, one has to drive around (something that home inspections do on a regular basis) and explore the public records for those neighborhoods.

So, please do explain what a “maintenance inspection” entails.

A MAINTENANCE inspection is exactly the same as a regular home inspection except for one key difference: I don’t describe anything. That’s where the time savings comes in and why the MAINTENANCE inspection is less expensive than most of the other inspections.
In the BASIC, STANDARD, PREMIUM, and TECH inspections, I have to describe the exterior walls (stucco, brick, wood, aluminum, etc.), the plumbing (PEX, PB, copper, etc.), the roof (clay tile, wood, composition, etc.) the windows (jalousie, single-pane, multi-pane, etc). That descriptive process takes time. With the MAINTENANCE inspection, done for a person who already owns the home and 99% of the time is a Client who had a BASIC, STANDARD, PREMIUM, or TECH inspection done six months ago, it’s just not necessary. There is the possibility that PB was replaced with PEX, that the wood roof was replaced with concrete tile, etc., but even then describing the new stuff just isn’t necessary since the home owner most likely knows what he ordered and paid for.

Do you do a report or just a walk around with client or do you offer both?

As I said, everything is the same EXCEPT for descriptions. Since I don’t note descriptions at the time of the inspection, they also are not in the report. Again, making the time to do the MAINTENANCE inspection much shorter. The only time a report is not issued is on the DRIVE inspections. Those are for investors who are considering many properties and are not in escrow on any of the properties that I am driving by to look at and give them my considered opinion on whether or not the property is a good prospect for making a good ROI when flipping.

Thanks guys for the input. Evidently there is no standard for this.

Russel, do you still have them sign an agreement? If so, do you customize it for this type of service?

Yes, they still sign an agreement. No, the agreement isn’t customized. Can’t see a reason for customizing the agreement to say, “There will be no descriptions of the property in the report.”
Not only are there no standards for the MAINTENANCE inspection, but standards are lacking in California for all home inspections, which is why my attorneys and I found back in 2003 that I could do BASIC, STANDARD, PREMIUM, TECH, LIST, DRIVE, RENT, and MAINTENANCE inspections with no concern for the law. The standards around here come from court cases and basically say “prevailing standards” or “generally accepted standards.” Thus, if there are no “prevailing” or “generally accepted” standards, then I get to create them!

To me, I would think this would be on the report. I am a homeowner and let’s say I don’t know that there is a roof leak in my attic. Are you saying if I find this such leak, I would not have it in the report? I don’t know if I am understanding this correctly.

I have never done a Maintance Inspection yet. I had someone call me yesterday and ask me about it. I told them it was like a standard home inspection and they get a report on their house with the issues in the summary of what I discovered.

So am I offering this in the wrong way.

I’ve been thinking about offering it.
There are a lot of people that would rather not give their home an annual inspection of their own and just want somebody to do it for them, or people who can’t do it anymore like elderly or handicapped. Everybody’s home needs looked at thoroughly at least once a year, for drain and fixture leaks, caulking updates and repairs, varmints in the attic, all the stuff that eventually wears out, just to name a few. When I get old I’ll just have my kid or grandkid look under all sinks for me, but not everybody has those options.
I can see where there is a great market for it. Just gotta make sure the agreement is thorough in its explanation of what is offered, and have lawyer look it over for sure.

Yes, there is a standard, ICC’s International Property Maintenance Code. The IPMC is an inspection standard, not a construction code.

Interesting - but not too applicable to the normal Home Inspector. This is strictly a code inspection and doesn’t really fit into our framework.

As an experienced inspector, it is obvious to me when items are needing maintenance, have been neglected, etc. and the consequences. It appears to me that it is just that knowledge applied to a property, and done as the inspector sees fit. No official format. It looks like anyone offering this inspection has either invented their own method following the general concept of maintenance, or is doing a full-blown inspection as a maintenance tool.

In my state, there is a definite definition of a ‘Home Inspection’ by law, but since there is no definition of ‘Home Maintenance Inspection’ I guess you just call your own shots, and make it clear it is not a “Home Inspection” per the SOP.

I perform what I call “presale inspections” as well as “maintenance inspections” as part of my business.

Both are performed as full inspections just like a buyer’s inspection.

I do offer discounts for these inspections though. They have to sign my contract just like potential buyers do on a traditional inspection.

Not a big portion of my inspection business btw. But I wish it was…

1) They are good for homeowners that want to stay on top of repairs and doing preventative maintenance on their home.

2) They are good for quality control on home repairs made by contractors.

3) Great for maintaining a home and keep it in good working order.

4) Good for making sure the buyers of a home get the repairs made properly before they close. Many times the items listed don’t get repaired properly or get fixed at all!

Black Hills Professional Home Inspections LLC
Black Hills Thermal Imaging
Rapid City, South Dakota





Stop by the InterNACHI booth at Inspection Universe and see me. One of my partners and I were very involved with maintenance inspections when the City of Toledo passed a law requiring them. We were on the private industry task force, representing InterNACHI, that helped the city implement the law (That’s why you see Toledo listed on InterNACHI’s approval list)

Maintenance inspections are a huge, but largely untapped, segment of the industry. I can help you build that part of your business.

Here is the sop for home Maintenance inspection