Answers To The Most Common Home Inspection Questions

1. What does your inspection cover?
All TREC licensed home inspectors are required to inspect the same things to a minimum standard of care as designated by the state. However home inspectors methods and techniques vary, no two home inspectors see the same things the same way. The information about what a home inspector is required to inspect can be found on the TREC website. Essentially we are required to inspect; the foundation, grading and drainage, roof coverings, attic spaces, exterior walls, interior walls, floors, doors, windows, fireplaces, porches and patios, attached decks, the electrical service, the HVAC system(s), the plumbing systems, the water heaters, jet-tubs, dishwashers, food waste disposers, kitchen vent fans, kitchen cooking equipment, bathroom vent fans, bathroom heaters, garage car entry overhead door openers, and clothes dryers. Other inspectors, such as myself, may also provide inspection services for systems such as; lawn sprinkler systems, swimming pools, and SPCS licensed Wood Destroying Insect inspections. I can do these things and I don’t contract any of this work out to third party contractors. One thing to remember about what is or isn’t inspected is that if it isn’t listed on the report then it probably wasn’t inspected.
2. How long have you been practicing in the home inspection profession and how many inspections have you completed?
I began my home inspection business in 1996. I have been practicing home inspection full time for over 20 years and I’ve personally performed thousands of home inspections. I do not have any business interest outside of home inspections.
3. Do you have Errors and Emissions (E&O) insurance?
All licensed TREC home inspectors are required to carry E&O and liability insurance. It’s a licensing requirement.
4. Are you specifically experienced in residential inspection?
The majority of my business is inspecting residential property for potential buyers. I also perform framing and one year inspections for new residential construction. Sometimes I perform pre-listing residential inspections for sellers. I occasionally inspect commercial property.
5. Do you offer to do repairs or improvements based on the inspection?
I do not. Nor do I give or receive referral fees for inspections or repair work.
6. Will you sell or trade my personal information to alarm companies, home warranty companies, or utility concierge companies?
I do not and will not. If an inspector receives any compensation, even if it’s a donation to a charity, then the client must be made aware of this transfer of information in writing. Some home inspectors have been known to include these types of notifications inconspicuously inside of their inspection agreements. This is another reason to read your inspection agreement.
8. Can I read my inspection agreement in advance?
Yes. A current copy of my inspection agreement is posted on the Good Home Inspection Website at www.goodhomeinspection.com. I will also send out a copy of the agreement included to my confirmation email before the inspection. You can sign the agreement before you pay me.
9. How long will the inspection take?
I typically block off five hours per inspection. If I can finish early I will, and if I need to stay longer I will. Sometimes older or larger homes will require more time, especially if there is some discovery during the inspection. I only do one inspection a day, on the home you are interested in, and I’ll stay until I’m finished.
10. How much will it cost?
I’m within market but I’m not a cheap home inspector. You shouldn’t have much trouble finding an inspector who’ll work for less than I, but there are others who charge more. What you will have trouble finding is a home inspector who will put as much time and care into a home inspection. And for someone to put as much time and care into an inspection as I and to charge less, I seriously doubt it. My prices are posted up front on my website, or just call me; you shouldn’t have to email or input your information into some data-collection bank to get a home inspection quote. If the house you’re interested in is outside of my target market then call and I’ll quickly offer you a reasonable quote with no strings attached.
11. Can I pay for my inspection at closing?
Unfortunately, no. Being an unbiased third party consultant I get paid at the time of inspection; cash, check, MasterCard, Visa.
12. What type of inspection report do you provide and how long will it take to receive the report?
A recent sample of my custom inspection report is available on my website www.goodhomeinspection.com. Since my reports are custom, I’ve taken the sample report opportunity to help explain my methods and any additional equipment I might use on a property your’e interested in. All TREC licensed inspectors are required to use the same TREC promulgated inspection report, however the promulgated report sets a legal perimeter or framework and the actual appearance of inspection reports vary. Most home inspectors use commercially available software which is a series of check-boxes to save them time. However I’ve custom crafted the inspection reports I provide to my clients to be more specific to the property you’re interested in. My reports are typically more narrative in nature. I will deliver your report the following day of the inspection, in most cases the following morning.
13. How many pages will the inspection report be?
My reports are shorter than some because I use a legal page format, which means that they have fewer headers and footers but contain more information about the property on each page. My reports are longer than some because they typically include more narrative information and I use larger type fonts for an easier read. One thing for certain, the reports I write are as long as they need to be. It’s not uncommon for my reports to be 30 pages long, that’s 30 pages on a legal paper format, a letter format would be much longer.
14. Will I be able to attend the inspection?
Yes of course. You’re about to make a very important decision in a relatively short period of time. I encourage you to be present for the inspection for as much time as it takes to reach your comfort level. After all, I’m working for you, it’s your inspection.
15. Will you be the inspector who shows up for the inspection?
Yes. I’m a sole proprietor. The same person who answers the phone and sets up your inspection will be the same person showing up for your inspection. And should you have questions later it’ll be the same person answering them, me.
16. Do you offer any warranties or guarantees?
I do not, I’m in the home inspection business. There are other companies that can offer an additional layer of comfort such as a maintenance contract, for an additional cost. A home inspection is very much like ‘a snapshot in time.’ I’m spending that day giving my best to observe the physical aspects of the house, and then that night writing the best report I know how on the house you are interested in. Anything beyond that is the business of real estate, which is speculative by nature. You should budget for some discovery, maintenance and repairs on any property you buy.
17. Do you maintain membership in a professional home inspector association?
There are a few good inspectors out there whom do not belong to any home inspector association. But an inspector who cares enough to belong to an association is much more likely to be current with the industry and technology. A home inspector who belongs to an association is much more likely to care about delivering a superior product to the client and have the resources to communicate affectively with the client’s agent. Inspectors belonging to associations advertise a higher standard of ethics. There are several different inspector associations, none is all good or all bad, and I’ve belong to most of them at one time or another. I’ve been with the American Association of Home Inspectors (ASHI) and the ASHI Texas Chapter, Lone Star ASHI (LSASHI) for over ten years. I’m ASHI Certified. I’m currently the President of Lone Star ASHI. ASHI Certified Inspectors are the only true 3rd party certified Inspectors in the industry that are accredited by the NCCA. The NCCA’s Standards for the Accreditation of Certification Programs, which were created in the mid-1970’s and were the first standards developed by the credentialing industry for professional certification programs. The NCCA Standards were developed to help ensure the health, welfare, and safety of the public. My being the president of Lone Star ASHI gives me some unique qualifications that should prove to be beneficial during the home buying/selling process.
18. Do you participate in continuing education programs to keep your expertise up to date?
Texas requires home inspectors to receive 32 hours of continuing education every two years. ASHI requires 20 hours of continuing education every year. My pest control license requires 3 hours of continuing education every year. I receive a minimum of 46 hours of continuing education every two years (23 hours per year). Because of my active involvement with ASHI I routinely receive more continuing education than what is required.
These questions were answered by Bud Rozell, ACI, TREC 4088, Lone Star ASHI President, DBA Good Home Inspection. Call or Text @ 214-215-4961.