Learn Seven Things You Must Know To Avoid Hiring The Wrong Home Inspector
1. Part Time Inspectors:
It takes a full time inspector at least 100 inspections to develop the eyes, ears and nose for hunting down problems. Part-time home inspectors simply don’t have the time in the field to develop that radar. Be sure to ask how many inspections the inspector conducts annually and how many years he/she has been doing them. A quality full time home inspector conducts between 200 and 400 inspections annually – blind inspectors conduct 50 to 100 inspections annually. Conducting 200-400 inspections each year requires extensive referrals, by prior clients, lenders, real estate agents and others — so there is a much greater chance the inspector is not blind!
2. Education & Training:
Being a contractor is very different from being a Professional Home Inspector. Home inspectors are responsible for evaluating all of the systems and components of the home — not just one aspect like the brick or the framing. To be able to provide a competent evaluation of all of these elements takes formal education and training. Did the inspector attend one of the top home inspection schools, Or did he complete a correspondence course, or have his brother in law Bubba show him how to inspect? Comprehensive continuing education and training is a must!
In Georgia there are no certification requirements at the city, county or state level. Always check to see if the inspector has attained a national level certification and maintained that certification over the years. To attain a certification from an organization like the American Society of Home Inspectors or the International Code Council, not only does the inspector have to go through rigorous course training but also must complete continuing education courses annually to keep up with the latest in building techniques and keep the certifications active. While certifications are critically important, it is the combination of Experience, Education and Training that makes the difference in the competency of your next home inspector. There is simply no substitute for experience and proper training in addition to proper certifications. -Beware the inspector who has not certifications and claims it only shows that the inspector knows how to take a test. If it’s so easy, why don’t they have one themselves.
4. The Inspection Report:
The top home inspectors in today’s business don’t produce handwritten reports. A professional inspector will provide a combination checklist / narrative report. Technology has evolved where you should expect to receive a full-color report on site, with digital photographs of the issues discovered during the course of the inspection. The report should provide “Summary Pages” with specific categories like Major Concerns, Safety Issues and Deferred Cost Items, etc. The report should not contain repair costs or action plans for repairs. Professional home inspectors inspect — they don’t repair! An inspector that makes repairs should always be avoided due to the conflict of interest inherent in that situation. Ask for a sample of an inspection report so you’ll know what you can expect for your time and money. After all, you are the client!
5. How Long Has The Inspection Company 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 work? Does the inspection company have dedicated employees serving as customer service representatives to schedule appointments and provide any needed follow up assistance or do you have to call “1-800-good-luck” to talk to a real person?
6. Ask To See What Other Home Buyers Have Said About The Inspector:
Quality Professional Home Inspectors ask their client’s to complete comment cards upon completion of the inspection. Professional Inspectors want to know what they are doing right, as well as what might need improvement. If the inspector can’t or won’t provide client referrals, he might be blind in more ways than one!
7. Ask Your Lender For A Referral To A Quality Home Inspector:
The lenders sole interest in the transaction is seeing that You get a quality home that’s right for you and your family!
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Open Door Inspections has been in business since 2007 serving the greater Atlanta area. We are a multi-inspector firm dedicated to providing you with the highest quality certified inspections money can buy.