Was Your Last Home Inspector Blind? OK, it’s not a particularly “nice” question, but a lot of folks complain that their previous home inspectors did a bad job. So, we’ve prepared some things you need to know to choose the right home inspection company.
We hope you’ll choose PROPERTY INSPECTOR, LLC, but just to be fair, here are the things you need to know.
Learn Seven (OK, 8) Things You Must Know To Find the Right Home Inspector
- Hire a Full-Time Home Inspector for the Best Results:Truth is: most of the 1,000+ inspectors who have left the business in Washington in the last five years were part-time. They couldn’t keep up with the industry demands and the educational and training requirements needed to make a business successful. How would you feel if someone does a home inspection for you, and you find out a few months later they left the business?A professional, full time home inspector conducts a minimum of 250 or more inspections a year – while part-time or inexperienced inspectors conduct 50 to 100 inspections a year. We do over 400 per year.
- Get A Home Inspection From The Owner Of The Company: Nobody works harder for you, the Client, than the owner(s) of the company! The success of any business depends on exceeding your expectations for quality and professionalism every time. Larger companies hire loads of inspectors who work by the hour, or for an inspection quota.Be sure you get an inspection from one of the “stakeholders” of the company, because they have a real interest in making sure YOU are totally satisfied!Education &. Training: Unlike a general contractor, home inspectors are responsible for inspecting all of the systems and components of the house, as well as operating all of these in “normal” settings. That takes formal education and training, not to mention ongoing continuing education, to keep up with a constantly changing industry and building codes. Ask if the inspector attended one of the top home inspection schools. Ask what classes he or she attended this past year.
- Avoid those inspectors that completed a correspondence course, and RUN from the guy who had his brother-in-law Bubba show him how to inspect? I Seriously, though: Washington State Department of Licensing requires that all licensed inspectors attend at least 12 hours of approved continuing education a year, in order to maintain a license. That’s not a lot, but Get THIS!!Dozens and dozens of inspectors in Washington every year let their licenses expire, or be put into an inactive status, because they DIDN’T ATTEND THE MINIMUM REQUIRED NUMBER OF HOURS OF CONTINUING EDUCATION! We are ASHI Certified and required to complete a minimum of 20 hours per year. Don’t hire someone who doesn’t even respect his profession enough to meet the minimum requirements!
- Are There Testimonials Readily Available From Previous Clients: Quality Professional Home Inspectors ask clients to give them feedback upon completion of the inspection process, then, display those testimonials for the public to see. So, go ahead and ask for testimonials or references, or look on the company’s website. Find out what previous clients say. If it’s one of those large companies, who hire lots of inspectors, ask to talk to the person who will be inspecting your house. IF they let you talk to that person, see how you feel about their responses to your questions. If they can’t tell you who will do it, then you might want to find a company who will be more responsive to your needs.
- Certifications AND Experience, Education &. Training: While certifications are certainly important, look for a combination of Experience, Education and Training. The problem is: certifications let the world know that the inspector can pass a test, not that he can inspect a home properly.Find out their experience level. It may not be a really good idea to allow some fairly new, inexperienced inspector to gain job experience with your home purchase decision.PLEASE UNDERSTAND:This one point can make a difference worth hundreds, even thousands, of dollars in the information you get before you buy. Find out what they did before they got into the Home Inspection business.
- What kind of Inspection Report should you expect: The top inspectors in today’s business don’t produce handwritten reports. And they don’t make you wait one or two or three days before they get around to sending you the Report, either. You should expect to receive a full-color, detailed report on-site, with digital photographs of any problems that may be discovered during the inspection. The report should provide a “Summary Page Section,” with specific explanations of “Deficiencies.”More importantly, you should ask HOW MUCH TIME THE INSPECTOR WILL PROVIDE YOU, FACE-TO-FACE, to help you understand what he or she has written in the Report.Inspectors in Washington are not required to provide verbal and written Reports. Make sure that your Inspector is willing to promise you enough time to go over the findings at the house at the end of the inspection. A frequent complaint from consumers is that their previous Inspector just handed them a written report and hurried off to their next inspection job. You deserve the inspector’s verbal explanation. Make sure you get it! We go over every report on site if the client is there or we are available on the phone if the client cannot make the inspection.Finally, ask for a sample of an inspection report so you’ll know what you can expect for your time and money. Every company you would want to hire provides free Sample Reports – most of them right on their websites, where the whole world can see the quality of their work. So ask for one, and listen to how they respond.
- Who Owns the Company, and How Long Have They Been In Business: Is the inspection company locally-owned and operated, or are they some far away “faceless corporation,” where no one is monitoring and evaluating the quality of their local work? If you are dealing with a multi-inspector firm, how long has the inspection company been in business? Most importantly, can you talk to the Owner or to a partner in order to discuss quality and service? Remember the point earlier: stakeholders want to maintain the quality and reputation of their company.
- BONUS ITEM: What Kind of Follow-up Service Can You Expect: A lot of companies in today’s market can provide home inspection services only. We can offer Air Quality sampling for
- Mold, Formaldehyde, Volatile Organic compounds concerning Overall Health, Allergies and Asthma; Wood Destroying Insect(WDO Pest) Inspections and reports; One Year New Home Warranty Inspections; Environmental Property and Neighborhood Reports Pool and Spa Inspections; Multi Family Dwelling Inspections; Winterizing and De-Winterizing of properties: soon to come: Energy Audits and Thermal Imagining and lots more services.If you want to be able to rely on the company you choose for years to come, choose one that provides ongoing consulting and inspection services. That way, if you call for the answer to a question a year or two later, they cannot only give you an answer, but provide additional services that you need at the time.
We Think We Stand Out In This Industry
OK, now for the sales pitch. You knew we would get around to it, huh?
At PROPERTY INSPECTOR, LLC, we’ve been doing a great job for over 6,500 happy home owners in the Greater Seattle Bellevue Metropolitan Area for almost fifteen years now. If you have been to our website, you’ve read what some of those folks have to say about our service and follow up resources. Before I got into the home inspection business, I remodeled and managed properties for more than twenty five years.
Very few inspectors in Greater Seattle have that kind of experience – experience that we put to work for you at your home inspection. We can communicate in English, Chinese, Filipino, and Spanish and with our reporting WE WORK FOR YOU!
Not the Realtor or the Seller, or the lender, or anyone else. Most of all, we have a genuine interest in seeing that our Clients are given our clearest and most honest opinions about the conditions in the home they are considering. We’ll tell you what we see. We’ll talk to you about how important anything might be, and we’ll discuss what your options are. We are a full-service inspection company, and we are out to do you a great job.
Call us NOW – 425.985.3289 OR Schedule online NOW!