When do you get paid?

Student here: wondering at what point does the inspector ask for payment? It seems that the safest is before the start of the inspection.

How do you approach this?

As my contact dictates, payment is due upon completion of the on-site inspection.
If the client will not be present, I use the INachi agreement system & then a secure PayPal invoice to be paid in advance. :slight_smile:

Of course you can request payment when you first get there.
I prefer to wait until after completion. I feel it is less awkward for everyone.

Marc I do the same only I use the Square and if people want to pay first I will allow them to deposit it right into my account. I never do an inspection for someone out of town without a payment and signature on agreement.

Hi Kevin.
What do you mean?
I don’t understand.

I either get paid through pay pal before I arrive or I get paid before I start at day of inspection.


There are times I may go ahead and start the inspection, waiting for client to arrive. Once client arrives I then greet and collect.

I collect payment prior to the inspection commencing. This is explained at the time of booking, in my PIA, on all Invoices/Receipts, and in the Confirmation email. 95% of all my clients attend the inspection… start to finish.

If a client will not be present for the inspection, I require payment to be made via PayPal or Google (although Google has become a PIA lately) at least 12 hours prior to the scheduled start time for the inspection. I charge an “Administration Fee” of 4% for all online payments.

I had a client “forget” her checkbook a few weeks ago. I told her to make payment via her smartphone she was latched onto, while I unloaded my ladders and tools. Done and done.

I have had this policy for about 5 years, and have not had a single complaint.

Commercial is a whole other ballgame, but still similar policy depending on the $$$ of the inspection, who the client is, and if they are a repeat client.

Very cool Kevin.
I wasn’t familiar with therm.
I have an old phone (not interested in upgrading), so I cannot use that type.
I used to use this CC merchant for many years until 4 months ago. Touch tone over the phone.
They started having “administrative fees” & they kept increasing. Then they wouldn’t let me cancel without a scanned image of my driver’s license.
I told them NO WAY, it is not in your contract with me.
They persisted & I had to block them from my checking account. Then I made an FTC complaint.
Only then did they return the 3 months they kept charging me for.
PayPal works for me, but it’s more than you pay. It’s a little over 3%.

ISN auto generates the contract and payment link and 95% pay me online using the link. The other 5% bring a check. ISN has converted this by the automation while I’m inspecting or farming, my schedule is filling along with my bank account…lol

InterNachi has an offer also for a big one you carry around with you.

On commercial inspections I am paid at least one day before starting and on larger projects half is paid at least a day before and the rest on start day of inspection.

Similar for me… if they’re there at inspection, I’ll have 'em write me a check. However, many of the times, they’re not, I’ll email an invoice and receive a check post inspection, never really had a problem, beyond having to remind someone a week or so later. I politely demand that a check be expedited out… but again, haven’t really had problems getting paid on commercial.

If waiting for a check for a residential inspection were policy, most of us would be… waiting. haha

Another oddity, I rarely ever print a report… but a bound copy for a commercial inspection is the norm here, who know :smiley:

Usually upon arrival or before.

I send a schedule confirmation email to client when the inspection is booked. In the email I tell them the inspection fee is typically paid by check, cash, or money order at the inspection. If they are not going to be at the inspection they can pay by credit card in advance by clicking link (my website with pay now PayPal button). As an example, so far I have four inspections scheduled for next week. Three have already paid and the other said she’ll bring a check. At the start of the inspection I lay out the invoice with a copy of their signed agreement (obtained in advance). This seems to always prompt them into writing the check. Very rarely does someone pay at the end of the inspection.

Thanks for all the replies. It sounds like prepayment is the norm in this thread but post payment isn’t too much of a hassle either.

What if you get prepayment and when you show up the house is BIGGER than the realtor said - bumping your fee into another category. It was 2000 sq ft warm but ACTUALLY has a 20x40 garage.

I don’t hire through the realtor. I do my own research. If I can’t, I inform the fee may change upon arrival if the stated information is grossly in error, so bring your checkbook just in case. The whole point is to get a “vested interest”. Chances are they won’t stiff you, thus not get the report, if you have some of their cash in hand. The reason they stiff you is generally because you told them all about the home following you around, so who needs the report? I got stiffed twice. Once on residential, once on commercial (two apartment buildings). Collected on the residential next day (he didn’t know I knew where he lived). I went after the commercial for six months before giving up. That one stung as I had to hire an assistant to get the job done in the timeframe the building owners game me, and he had to be paid, out of my pocket.

In my confirmation and contract letter I indicate payment is due before or at the inspection.

Never been stiffed.

Sometimes during the walk around I suggest we take care of business as we go near my clipboard in the kitchen.

Seems to work every time.

I did have one client that would not pay for the Radon test until he had the report in hand. It was a power play on his part but not a big deal.

We met at a bar near my home a few days later.

I took payment and I reported the results.

Not a bad guy as I recently bumped into him and we remembered each other.

I understood where he was coming from as I came from an industry where payment was never made until the deliverable was in hand.

I have had the same policy except it’s been for 13 years.

My process is a lot like Mike’s.

I send confirmation email via ISN. I then send the PIA via ISN, I email both BA & LA to inform of the dates & time of the inspection & to clear things as needed for access into attics, panels etc… I also notify them that I’ll be testing GFCI & AFCI and to be sure all computers, tv’s etc are off.

I normally (95% of the time) get paid by check at the end of the inspection, I also usually already have a signed agreement. The only way I accept CC payment anymore is through PayPal.

The report does not get delivered until:

  1. I have a signed agreement.
  2. I have been paid.