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Old 04-09-2018, 02:32 AM
 
1,528 posts, read 735,250 times
Reputation: 2062

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Quote:
Originally Posted by carcrazy67 View Post
I'm somewhat curious by nature, so, what is the basis for your opinion? Are you in the real estate or inspection business? I'm pretty certain the vast majority of agents WILL allow their clients choose the inspector. Quite frankly I've never heard of one preventing a client from making that choice.

Do you have personal first hand knowledge of collusion between agents and inspectors?

I've been in the business for a long time and have never seen evidence of it in my market. There is FAR too much liability on the part of both parties....real estate agents and inspectors. Who would risk losing their livelihood? Compared to the average client, wouldn't it make sense that a "good" agent, that has been involved in hundreds of transactions, would have a better sense of who is a good inspector and who is not? Why have an agent if you can't trust their opinion?

I can tell you that almost without exception, the average person that that interviews me, asks exactly the same questions (as found on the internet). Only problem is, many of those questions really don't help one choose the best inspector. Sadly, in the end, the deciding factor for most is price!

By the way, a few years back I knew an inspector who followed the no referrals from agents concept. He was a good inspector, very learned. Unfortunately....he's out of business!
I've said many times that I'm not saying there is any collusion. You don't need formal, organized collusion to mean there are issues. Agents are the ones talking about collusion in an attempt to discredit any dissenting views - i.e. basically "you think everyone is in collusion".

Your last point underscores the issue exactly. Agent referrals are vital to inspectors. Sadly in your example, a good inspector learned that the hard way. Do you think that example supports the point you're trying to make? When you depend on referrers for your livelihood, you can become beholden to them. Pleasing them may become as important or more important than the end client. This is not just my opinion.
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Old 04-09-2018, 04:27 AM
 
Location: Cary, NC
31,691 posts, read 55,513,715 times
Reputation: 30266
Quote:
Originally Posted by MikePRU View Post
I'm not sure how long this association has been around but this movement doesn't exactly seem to be catching fire. I went to the Massachusetts page in the directory and found 4 inspection companies listed and 1 attorney. Not sure why there was an attorney in their directory.

Also, I had a good chuckle reading the home page when I got to the definition section. I especially enjoyed this one:

What Is A “Deal Killer”? The derogatory phrase “deal killer” is a term used by by real estate agents to taint home inspectors who give buyers objective / non-bias information. Information that may lead the buyer to renegotiate or to look at other properties. Many real estate agents view these “deal killers” as obstacles to the sales commission and will use a number of tactics to control the inspector selection process to make sure that prospective buyers do not retain independent home inspectors.

I've never seen a more inaccurate definition of any term anywhere. A "deal killer" is in fact a home inspector that taints the results of the inspection by being subjective/bias in their presentation of the information. I love that this website tries to paint the agent as the bad guy in these situations when in actuality it's the inspector. A home inspector's job is to present an accurate an unbiased report of the condition of the property. Not scare a buyer away from a perfectly fine house.

From time-to-time I've encountered DK inspectors. The very basis of them being DK's is that they inject their own opinions into the inspection rather than being a presenter of objective fact.
Along with opinion, some are skilled in "Drama" and "Hyperbole."
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Old 04-09-2018, 07:34 AM
 
Location: Near Falls Lake
2,327 posts, read 1,691,685 times
Reputation: 2166
Quote:
Originally Posted by just_because View Post
I've said many times that I'm not saying there is any collusion. You don't need formal, organized collusion to mean there are issues. Agents are the ones talking about collusion in an attempt to discredit any dissenting views - i.e. basically "you think everyone is in collusion".

Your last point underscores the issue exactly. Agent referrals are vital to inspectors. Sadly in your example, a good inspector learned that the hard way. Do you think that example supports the point you're trying to make? When you depend on referrers for your livelihood, you can become beholden to them. Pleasing them may become as important or more important than the end client. This is not just my opinion.
For the most part we do depend on agent referrals but pleasing them is certainly not the end goal. We have legal obligations and responsibilities to the client and the client only! Apparently you have no idea about the amount of liability involved! If I or another inspector were to "soft shoe" a foundation/roof or moisture issue, we could then be on the hook for 10's of thousands of dollars.....Who in their right mind would put themselves in that kind of legal or financial jeopardy? Put yourself in that situation, what would YOU do? Would YOU chose to be beholden to an agent by playing down the issue? I'm betting the answer is no.
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Old 04-09-2018, 09:14 AM
 
Location: Needham, MA
6,328 posts, read 9,071,891 times
Reputation: 5324
Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeJaquish View Post
Along with opinion, some are skilled in "Drama" and "Hyperbole."
Yup. I was being nice and considering those under the columns of subjectivity and bias.

I might have already shared this example but . . . I once had a home inspector refer to a few small holes in the drywall of a garage as a "potentially deadly" issue. I could literally see the urine stain on that buyer's paints after that. Were the holes a defect? Absolutely! Is it something easy and inexpensive to fix. Absolutely! Did it deserve to be labelled as "potentially deadly"? Definitely not.
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Old 04-09-2018, 10:00 AM
 
Location: Rochester, WA
3,850 posts, read 2,086,074 times
Reputation: 10619
Funny.... in my vocabulary, the Deal Killer is the house. And bonus points and kudos go to the inspector who finds that out before my first-time buyer client buys it.

If all agents don't feel that way, then shame on them... but every agent here has said they'd rather an inspector find the big issue than hide it. Relationships and measures of success are so much more complicated than some give us credit for.
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Old 04-09-2018, 10:03 AM
 
Location: Columbia, SC
8,862 posts, read 17,486,453 times
Reputation: 6244
Quote:
Originally Posted by MikePRU View Post
Yup. I was being nice and considering those under the columns of subjectivity and bias.

I might have already shared this example but . . . I once had a home inspector refer to a few small holes in the drywall of a garage as a "potentially deadly" issue. I could literally see the urine stain on that buyer's paints after that. Were the holes a defect? Absolutely! Is it something easy and inexpensive to fix. Absolutely! Did it deserve to be labelled as "potentially deadly"? Definitely not.
My favorite was a good inspector who's a terrible communicator. My buyer hired him because they went to the same church. Among the "major" items he listed was a hole under the house that could "potentially create foundation issues." My buyer asked about it and upon further inquiry it seems the dog had just dug out a little area he laid in. My buyer asked the inspector "Basically I just need to get a bucket of dirt and fill the hole in?" Inspector said yes. That's what I hate about this particular inspector. He does a good inspection but he always make it sound like the house is about to fall down. Awful communication skills.
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Old 04-10-2018, 04:00 PM
 
Location: Needham, MA
6,328 posts, read 9,071,891 times
Reputation: 5324
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brandon Hoffman View Post
My favorite was a good inspector who's a terrible communicator. My buyer hired him because they went to the same church. Among the "major" items he listed was a hole under the house that could "potentially create foundation issues." My buyer asked about it and upon further inquiry it seems the dog had just dug out a little area he laid in. My buyer asked the inspector "Basically I just need to get a bucket of dirt and fill the hole in?" Inspector said yes. That's what I hate about this particular inspector. He does a good inspection but he always make it sound like the house is about to fall down. Awful communication skills.
That's a pretty text book example of one of the types of DK's.
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Old 04-10-2018, 05:24 PM
 
Location: PVB
2,425 posts, read 1,228,033 times
Reputation: 2804
What is the liability of an inspector? I understand they can insert a clause in his contract that limits his liability to the cost of the inspection. In other words, if he misses a problem, the most he can pay is the return of his fee. Its called an exculpatory clause. It only applies to the person who signed the contract. If the buyer sues the real estate agent and the inspector, the clause does not protect the inspector from liability to the agent.
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Old 04-10-2018, 07:06 PM
 
Location: Salem, OR
13,754 posts, read 31,653,769 times
Reputation: 12131
Quote:
Originally Posted by Thundarr457 View Post
What is the liability of an inspector? I understand they can insert a clause in his contract that limits his liability to the cost of the inspection. In other words, if he misses a problem, the most he can pay is the return of his fee. Its called an exculpatory clause. It only applies to the person who signed the contract. If the buyer sues the real estate agent and the inspector, the clause does not protect the inspector from liability to the agent.
It depends on state laws. In Oregon, they are licensed by the CCB (Construction Contractor's Board) and technically a type of contractor so they are subject to laws regarding contractors. Limited liability clauses don't hold water for gross negligence issues here.
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Old 04-11-2018, 03:52 PM
 
Location: Knoxville
4,140 posts, read 19,805,484 times
Reputation: 4736
I admit I did not read all of the comments on this thread, so if I repeat - sorry.

I've been an inspector for 29 years, with over 10,000 inspections under my belt. Do I get Realtor referrals? Of course I do. I have a great reputation, so it would be strange if I didn't get recommended for jobs.

Do I alter my inspection or report to help get referrals, or stay in good favor with Realtors? Of course not! I want happy CLIENTS! Clients are a much better referral base than Realtors. The other side of it, is I obviously don't want to be sued. I can't think of any profession that wants to be sued. For someone to insinuate that "not wanting to be sued" is a negative feature, or somehow equal to being corrupt, is very mistaken, and possibly delusional.

How do I keep from getting sued? By doing the best job I can, and produce the most accurate inspection report I can. There is nothing in it for me to ignore something on a house. A lawsuit could wipe out the equivalent of dozens and dozens of inspections, and I could possibly lose my license. I try to document everything I can in the house. Some small stuff, some big stuff.

Kill a deal? Nonsense! What could the incentive be for me to try to kill a deal? The more things I find in a house means the more work for me to write the report. I would love it if every house had zero defects. Much less work for me, and everyone is happy. There is absolutely no basis for the argument that "Inspector has to find stuff to justify their fee". My fee is set long before I step foot in the house, and many times I'm paid before I even show up. The fee is the same if I find 150 things wrong, or zero. Finding stuff wrong just adds time to the job, and a lot more work.

I have Realtors that give out a list. I have some that tell their clients, "here is a list, but this guy did mine". I have Realtors that use me for their own homes, but have never referred me to their clients. I have a lot of sellers of homes I inspected call me to inspect the one they are buying, even when my client didn't buy their house. I get referrals from Realtors I don't even know. They refer me because a Realtor in their office referred me.

I have had sellers throw me out of their house during an inspection, then call me a week or so later to do the home they are buying. They get mad at me, then cool off and realize the quality of the job I did, and want that quality.

I know hundreds of inspectors all over the country. Less than a handful would be what I consider "ethically challenged" (just like any profession, bad apples). They all take pride in their work, and view themselves as very ethical, and conduct themselves in a professional manner. We have a Code of Ethics that we adhere to. There are a couple home inspector professional organizations, and they both have a Standards of Practice and a Code of Ethics. All licensed States have a SOP and COE as well. With a few exceptions, they are all basically the same.

Should someone take a Realtors referral for a home inspector, or mortgage company, or Title company, or fill in the blank? Maybe yes, maybe no. It all boils down to if the client trusts their Realtor, and the Realtor is ethical.

Sorry this is so long. Off soapbox now.
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