Home/House Inspection - Posted by Art

Posted by George on April 11, 2000 at 23:54:07:

I do agree most home inspectors are poor at best, there are some good ones. You need to find one that knows what you are trying to do, and has personal experience (ex. owns rentals, or has done rehab). I have an excellent one in PA, because he owns rental properties and has bought rundown properties and fixed up. I don’t have one in NJ, so I hired a structural engineer. He was the absolute worst! He shows up in dress clothes, no flashlight, no tools, no ladder. Walks around the building, asks me what I’m concerned with. I mention foundation, he looks and says it’s fine.
I also have my RE license and one of my buyers hired an inspector. Well while he is examining the 4 year old gas furnace, I notice the 1940 permit for underground oil tank prominently displayed on the basement wall, along with the wrench to open the fill cap and the dip stick hanging on the wall. So as far as he was concerned, there was nothing that led him to believe there could be an abandoned tank on the property.

Home/House Inspection - Posted by Art

Posted by Art on April 11, 2000 at 09:45:08:

I’m on the verge on buying my first property “no money down”. It’s a 1840 Colonial. Any guidance on the timing and contract wording of a house inspection? Is there a creative way to get the seller to pay for it?

Re: Home/House Inspection - Posted by Bill (OH)

Posted by Bill (OH) on April 11, 2000 at 17:18:03:

Just my two cents worth—as a realtor and investor, I despise home inspectors. Most of them aren’t worth the paper they hang on their walls and frequently torpedoe perfectly good deals by talking about something they know nothing about.

When I’m inspecting a property I look for new work—wiring, furnace etc. Then I go down to the city or county and look for permits. If I don’t have new work I’ll call a licensed tradesman whose everyday business is to work on whatever I want inspected—plumbing, furnace/ac, foundation or whatever. I want somebody who is licensed and works with what I’m concerned about every day. So many of these home inspectors took a course somewhere and now they are ‘experts’—baloney!!

Take the $250 you would pay a so called ‘home inspector’ and you can have a better inspection done by licensed tradesman.

Re: Home/House Inspection - Posted by Glen NY

Posted by Glen NY on April 11, 2000 at 19:19:03:

The problem with the home inspection services is that in many states the only requirement to become a home inspector is to have enough money to print business cards. I have personally inspected homes that have been inspected by these “inspectors” and have heard the realtor say in the background, “Why did the previous two inspectors not see that?” The answer is that they do not have the breadth and quality of experience to know building codes, structural issues, safety problems and many other things that appear during a typical home inspection.

In my opinion, rendering professional opinions on code, structure and similar issues is the practice of Engineering, and should only be done by licensed Professional Engineers. Unfortunately, that is not the case, typically. I have done inspections since 1993 as part of my engineering practice and recommend that anyone looking for an inspector should hire a PE who designs, specifies, and inspects. They are the only inspectors with the breadth of knowledge required to do the job correctly.

Guess this one hit a bit of a sore spot, but that is my opinion.

Re: Home/House Inspection - Posted by Bill (OH)

Posted by Bill (OH) on April 12, 2000 at 05:40:18:

I couldn’t agree with you more! The problem is that in some areas these engineers are tough to find (and expensive) and with most properties the big concern is the wiring/heating/ac—all of which could be handled by licensed tradesmen.

Yeah, it’s a sore point as I’ve seen so many good deals get into trouble because of the opinion of some so called ‘house inspector’. In the office I work in, we strongly discourage our sellers from allowing whole house inspections because of this.