WM/4 point Declaratory Statement

Declaratory Statement request asks if the Home Inspector Standards of Practice apply to Wind Mitigation and 4 Point Inspections performed outside the scope of Home Inspections.

Response published 4/3/2015.

Notice of Declaratory Statement

DEPARTMENT OF BUSINESS AND PROFESSIONAL REGULATION
RULE NOS.: RULE TITLES:
61-30.801 Standards of Practice, General
61-30.802 Standards of Practice, Structure
61-30.803 Standards of Practice, Electrical Systems
61-30.804 Standards of Practice, HVAC Systems
61-30.805 Standards of Practice, Roof Covering
61-30.806 Standards of Practice, Plumbing System
61-30.807 Standards of Practice, Interior Components
61-30.808 Standards of Practice, Fireplaces and Solid Fuel Burning Appliances
61-30.809 Standards of Practice, Household Appliances
61-30.810 Standards of Practice, Exterior Components
61-30.811 Standards of Practice, Site Conditions that Affect the Structure

NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that the Department of Business and Professional Regulation has declined to rule on the petition for declaratory statement filed by Jon D. Tremper on December 11, 2014. The following is a summary of the agency’s declination of the petition:
The petition fails to identify a particular set of circumstances about which a declaratory statement can be issued or how the petitioner is substantially affected. Moreover, the Department declines to issue a statement of general applicability or to initiate rulemaking.

From InterNACHI Inspection Forum - New Thread http://www.nachi.org/forum/newthread.php?do=postthread&f=73#ixzz3XxnmrQes

:mrgreen:

Gee, I wonder what this means?

"The petition fails to identify a particular set of circumstances about which a declaratory statement can be issued or how the petitioner is substantially affected. Moreover, the Department declines to issue a statement of general applicability or to initiate rulemaking."

Shocking.

What is the downside? :roll:

Ah hahahahah hhhaa hahah Someone actually tried again to get a answer.

GIVE UP. THEY THE GOV DOES NOT GIVE A CRAP and surely will not make a decision therefore putting the decision on them.

They got their answer, and it wasn’t the one they wanted. Declaratory Statements require the petitioner to show how they would be substantially affected for the request. In this case, the petitioner asked for a declarative statement stating that the standards of practice for home inspectors do not apply to insurance inspections and that the petitioner would be substantially affected if they did…

They ruled against his request as the petitioner failed to show how he would be substantially affected by the standards of his license applying to insurance inspections…

:mrgreen:

…drink that in.

I understand the request was made because of a Home Inspector in south Florida was sued because of a Mitigation Inspection. I don’t know anything about the case, it was settled out of court and everything was sealed/not available.

To me it did not matter which way DBPR decided.

DBPR says Wind Mit/4 point inspections that Home Inspectors SOP apply.
OK, the SOP says inspectors can add or exclude items if agreed to by the inspector and client. Do these inspections how you say you will do them.

DBPR says Wind Mit/4 point inspections that Home Inspectors SOP do not apply.
OK, so now do these inspections according to whatever you said you would do in your pre-inspection agreement/ contract.

About a month ago I called and spoke to OIR’s lawyer. This was after talking to a few people at OIR. My questions to these people were; I have a few questions about the 1802 form and wanted answers on how to do something.

The answer from OIR’s lawyer was; we do not have the technical expertise to answer any questions on how the 1802 form should be completed. Great.
This would be something to put in your pre-inspection agreement/contract that the agency that put out a technical form with no instructions on how to complete the form other than the form itself and would not provide any answers to questions about the form.

This is important because of the different information put out by course providers on how to complete the form. My thinking is if the information does not come from OIR then its not valid and you can use whatever interpretation you want to complete the form.

There are people/course providers putting out good information on how to complete the form. But this is just their interpretation on how to do something.

Good legal review is needed on Wind Mit and 4 point pre-inspection agreements /contracts.

Some time ago I started following the Required Formal Review of an agency’s rules/forms every 2 years.
The agency must among other things clarify and simplify its rules and file a report with Senate/House and Administrative Procedures Committee that they have complied.

There was an exemption the last time this was required.

This year the Formal Review is required by October 1.

Will they comply or get other exemption?

Richard Haynes

most home inspectors don’t make jack s*** on wind mits so why should we care?

Or, you could simplify the whole process and just follow your standards and let the chips fall where they may. There are some in the industry who are telling you point blank that your standards apply, they are telling you this first hand as they are actively involved in suing other inspectors who do not perform according to their standards.

I always tend to listen to the guy who might be sitting across from me in court…call me crazy :roll:

Specifically, what is so bad about the state standards that applying them to insurance inspections would be so darn difficult?

Can you please lay out exactly how you would apply the HI-SOP to stand alone insurance inspections? Inquiring minds would like to know what your routine would be.

Brad! It can’t be done.it’s a whole new ballgame.

Wait on it…some people are great presenters of “issues”…just not so great at presenting “solutions”.

Bert

Brad are you looking to get a 17 page reply.
Rob’s still typing. :slight_smile:

You mean copy and paste?:mrgreen:

How hard is it to report on the roof, electrical, plumbing, and AC / Heating to your standards. Unless you are not listing all of the deficiencies, it should be simple to do. And keep in mind that your inspection report and 4 point should mirror each other.

I’m having a hard time trying to understand how some people think that Florida’s Home Inspector SOP apply to insurance inspections.

Mitigation Inspections, 1802 form

I just reviewed the Home Inspectors SOP for home inspections and there is not one single item on the 1802 that is required by the SOP.

Owners information. Not required by SOP.

NOTE: Take photographs. Not required by SOP.

  1. Building Code info. Not required by SOP.

  2. Roof Covering info. Not required by SOP.

  3. Roof Deck Attachment. Not required by SOP.

  4. Roof to Wall Attachment. Not required by SOP.

  5. Roof Geometry. Not required by SOP.

  6. Secondary Water Resistance. Not required by SOP.

  7. Opening Protection. Not required by SOP.

The Mitigation Inspection wants items about the home described on what is present.

The Home Inspection SOP you only inspect the required items and report on systems or components that are significantly deficient or near the end of its service life. You are not required to describe things about the home.

Now comes the bigger problem. We have an Inspection Form by a State of Florida Agency that provides no instruction on how to complete the form other than the form itself and will not answer questions about the form stating that they do not have the technical expertise to answer questions.

This is like trying to complete your income taxes. the long form naturally with assorted schedules and not provided any instructions on how to complete the forms.

There are a lot of different opinions being put out on how to complete the form. The only correct/valid opinion has to come from OIR.

Solutions to the problem.

The Office of Insurance Regulation (OIR) needs to put out an instruction on how to complete the from. This needs to be the approximate same size of material provided by some of the course providers, about 250-300 pages to start with.

Then, all people doing Mitigation Inspections will be using the same material on how to do the inspections.

If you have questions you can contact OIR for an answer. If they can not or will not answer your question. You can state this in your preinspection agreement/contract.

It could be mentioned that someone else/another inspector may have a different opinion about something, but the only correct/valid answer has to come from OIR.

Items could be added/changed to OIR’s instruction on the 2 year formal review.

It’s not going to be easy for a correct fix.

All items of concern needs to be addressed in your agreement/contract.

To my understanding even a Judge can not over rule a valid prior contract.
That’s why we have marriage prenuptial agreements.

The other insurance inspections. Mostly 4 points. There are more companies involved and what they want described. They also want to know if items are functional, etc. so this is some of the things that are in the Home Inspectors SOP.

The main thing is items need to be spelled out in the agreement on what you are going to do and not do. Again, legal review is a must.

Richard Haynes

Well said Richard.

Lets not forget the SoP’s are a minimum, anyone operating at or producing reports strictly in compliance with the SoP’s is operating at the lowest allowable level…pretty much a D-, Bravo!

As for “structure” and describing items, you are reading your SoP’s wrong and lack full understanding of how they apply based on those statements. Specifically, 61-30.801 General lays out the format for reporting and is inclusive in the reporting requirements for the separate standards.

61-30.801 Standards of Practice, General. (1) Home inspections performed to these Standards of Practice are intended to provide the client with information regarding the overall condition of installed systems and components of the home based on observation of the visible and apparent condition of the structure and components at the time of the home inspection and to report on those systems and components inspected that, in the professional opinion of the inspector, are significantly deficient or at the end of their service lives. A home inspection does not include the prediction of future conditions.

***Structure and Components *** includes all of the following:

61-30.802 Standards of Practice, Structure. (1) Structural system and components include the following:
(a) Foundation; (b) Floor structure; © Wall structure; (d) Ceiling structure; (e) Roof structure; (f) Posts; (g) Beams; (h) Columns; (j) Joists; (k) Rafters; (l) Trusses; (m) Other framing; and

I don’t know Richard, certainly looks like structure to me…

“The Home Inspection SOP you only inspect the required items and report on systems or components that are significantly deficient or near the end of its service life. You are not required to describe things about the home”

WRONG!

61-30.101 Definitions. (10) Describe: To distinguish a system or component by its type or other observed significant characteristics; to distinguish it from other systems or components.

61-30.801 Standards of Practice, General (4) The inspector shall inspect and report as required by Section 468.8323, F.S., when required by these standards, systems or components by their type and/or significant characteristics.

“To my understanding even a Judge can not over rule a valid prior contract.
That’s why we have marriage prenuptial agreements”

Wrong again, you can not relieve yourself of your statutory obligations and a pre-inspection agreement only protects you when you’re right! If you are wrong or missing something…it is worthless as you can not indemnify yourself from liability.

People keep referencing a wind mit suit. From my understanding, after small talk with others, the case was about an inspector that failed to properly inspect a roof and note that it was not brought up to speed when the re-roof was done. It was quite the mess.
The mitigation form was used only as a secondary example to show incompetence. If the individual failed to properly inspect and report on the improper roof application, then referencing the improper form would have been a bonus.

I know there are people like Robert who strive to make an inspection more code based. I see nothing wrong with this and if that’s how he chooses to run his business then great. It is our business to run as we choose.
When you live in an area where most homes are newer, the referencing code is more relevant, and you have nothing else to go by. The only thing to inspect on a new home is code compliance. My brother lives in a small town in NE. There are very few new homes, and many are 50 years or older. Inspecting a home built in 1920 takes experience and understanding of how homes were made “then” and making choices when telling people if the non-code compliant construction is performing or needs improvements.

The reality is that a home inspection is a basic visual inspection designed to inspect and document real time conditions or visible defects of the home. It was never originally intended to be a code enforcement inspection, and trying to make that the baseline is a bad idea. It would be impossible to be the spotlight inspector some think we should be. We would need to know building practices and codes for all trades, from the last 50 years to properly do this level of inspection. Most tradesman don’t know everything from their own specific trade after 30 years. But yet some expect the inspector to know this for all trades. Impossible.
Some say that home inspectors are below contractors. Well if you hire me to perform a basic visual inspection on a home, then in a sense we are. Our job was originally created to check the a/c for function and report on working condition and any “visible” issues. It is not to inspect a 20 year old a/c and report on all the things that are not up to code. We can if we choose to, but in most cases it won’t be.
The two biggest things that affect this state are the insurance related issues and the existing building construction codes. Most other states have neither of these, so it does not affect the home retroactively or cause the inspector to retain 3 times the amount of knowledge and training that most other states do not require.

We need to keep in mind what a SOP inspection is and what its intended for. I have come across people that expect more than this and fail to understand the intention of a “home inspection”. If you want to do more, do exhaustive permit research, quote more code and charge more, then your agreement and intentions should be projected to your clients. The same goes for those who want to be minimalist as well.
The best way to keep out of trouble is to make sure your clients understand what type of service “you” are offering them.

BTW, this comment is not directed to Mr. Sheppard. I have met him personally and he’s not that bad after all. :slight_smile: