"Relax, trust in quality and experience for your home inspection."
Calvin has decided to "retire from the rat race" of doing JUST the BUYER TYPE whole house inspections. He still does everything else listed, except for radon and lead paint.
After my inspection is finished, I do hope you read completely, not only the inspection report and the summary I send to you, but that you also look at and read the custom wording on each glossy picture I include. Prior to the inspection, you will receive my pre-inspection package that includes the contracts, as well as my credentials and training, pamphlets, and brochures. Please read and understand and then sign the contracts and send those back, so that I know you understand what is covered during a State Licensed Home Inspection and what is not.
The State of Indiana required all home inspectors to be licensed on July 1, 2005. We pay a $400.00 license fee every 2 years. The inspection AND THE REPORT has to meet minimum State standards. However, there are no “checks and balances” required by the State. No reports have to be turned over to the State for review. How will they know if an inspector is doing his job? How will YOU know unless you read and understand the 17 pages of fine print outlining the laws? Even if reports were required to be turned in, how will the State know what an inspector missed inspecting in the house, or what he missed putting in the report? It’s still BUYER BEWARE when it comes to hiring a home inspector. Do your own research. I have to carry a high deductible for my insurance just to be able to afford it. Because so many inspectors get sued across the country, the rates for insurance are high. Also know that 30% of home inspectors go out of business each year, but there are just as many “newbies” that sign up each year to take their place who “think” this is the profession for them. I get several calls a year from fellows who want to quit their day job to become a home inspector-fellows who are unemployed, chefs, factory workers, etc. Fellows think they are qualified because: “I have done a lot of remodeling on my own home”. I tell them that the government classifies a home inspector’s job as “high risk and low pay”. Then I tell them that to be qualified to do all the types of inspections that I do-including the environmental inspections-it cost me $53,000.00 in up front start up costs to just get the doors of my business open, before I earned even my first dollar. That usually makes them think that their current situation isn’t all that bad after all! A way you can tell how long a home inspector has been in business is to look at his license #. For example, mine is HI00500015. HI means Home Inspector. 005 means I received my license in 2005. 00015 means I was the 15th home inspector to receive my license THAT year. So now if you see a license that is HI007055, this means that the inspector was the 55th one to sign up during the year of 2007. This does NOT mean he was the 55th one to sign up in the State since license inception began on July 1, 2005, but was the 55th one in the year of 2007 ONLY.
The home inspection law states that a person who recommends a home inspector is not liable if “good faith” was used. What is “good faith”? Surely that means more than just knowing he carries a license in his back pocket. They should know that the inspector is inspecting AND reporting according to State standards. Sometimes, realtors have a “Fave 5” list of home inspectors to hand to clients. They should know that each one of those inspectors is following the law. If they want to avoid any liability, they should hand the client a phone book or nothing at all, and tell them to go to the web. Sometimes a few realtors have tried (and succeeded) to talk a buyer out of using me, (using pricing as a “ruse”), and sometimes they have tried (and succeeded) to talk a seller out of using me. This is strange and rather absurd. If (when) an inexperienced inspector misses something, the buyer can sue not only the home inspector but also the realtor who handed them the list, and the seller, claiming that they should have known or did know about the deficiency. When a seller gets nervous because he has heard I am coming to do the inspection, (whether he hired me or the buyer hired me), because of what he may have been “told” about me, he should relax and know that his chances of being sued are nil with me, rather than being sky high with an inexperienced inspector showing up and NOT doing a State Licensed home inspection and report. If I’m even on someone’s “Fave 5” list, I’m probably down at the bottom on the last line. The problem is most home inspectors did not change their ways when licensing kicked in to meet the newer tougher standards. Demand the best!
As of 2017, I am the only member of the Independent Home Inspectors of North America, in the State of Indiana. See the attached link on my website. This means I have signed an oath NOT to SOLICIT work from realtors. I still work with realtors each week because my buyers are purchasing a home and realtors are usually involved, but with the exception for when my clients are purchasing a FSBO property. I find it interesting that sometimes I get calls from realtors when they have a persnickety client who is wealthy and/or they are a professional in the area of a lawyer, doctor, engineer, CPA, business owner, dentist, etc. Getting back to the “Fave 5” list I talked about, if they weren’t worried about liability, why not use the "other" inspectors? I’ll take any job that comes along, whether it’s for the little old widow lady buying a bungalow, or the professional who bought the 1.6 million dollar lake property. (By the way, that realtor “earned” an $80,000 commission-do you think they want to see any problems listed in my inspection report)? (By the way there were several, but the deal still went through). If a deal doesn’t go through it was because of the condition of the house or an unwillingness of the buyer and seller to negotiate, or the house was too high priced to begin with. I enjoy working with the honest and conscientious realtors out there. I hope you find one for your transaction. It’s best for you to enlist the help of a realtor from a different company than from the company who has the house listed, that you are interested in (Independent Home Inspectors of North America).