Category Archives: Blog

New Inspector’s Perspective On Home Inspection Field

I’m a journeyman carpenter and work as a project manager/ estimator for a commercial general contractor. This limits me to generally less than 40 full inspections a year. However, nearing retirement, this is what I want now. Since becoming an inspector in 2011, I have come to develop a small but loyal referral base from past clients. I started out soliciting real estate agents and discovered quickly what was expected to get inspection client leads. Since I failed to deliver on those expectations, I’m pretty much blackballed by the agents. The latest comment from a broker to my client’s agent was, “He always says things are a problem”. This due to my finding faulty paperwork with the local health department on a second septic tank on the property for a work shop bathroom.

Other comments I “take too long” and I’m “too thorough”. I had one agent that was sending a number of client leads, but those referrals have pretty much stopped. She says I scare her buyers. When she last confronted me about this, I asked if she wanted me to not tell the buyer X, Y or Z. I don’t think that went over well.

My step son, a loan originator, helped me starting out by referring some of the agents he works with. After the third one was referred to me, he asked me to come in to discuss my inspection methods. He basically stated that I need to “go along to get along”. I politely listened, then asked if he wanted his auto mechanic to do that for his daughter’s car. That ended the conversation.

From my involvement in web forums it’s painfully obvious there are a very limited number of inspectors really interested in helping their clients, but a vast number who think this profession is an easy pass to big dollars and the quickest way to get there by prostituting themselves to the agents.

Based on what I have seen in this field for the last 5 years, I’m confident I have made the right moral decision to follow the path your organization has also chosen.

Bill Hawkins

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Bill Hawkins

Hawkeye Inspection Service, LLC

Cell 502-608-9479

Using A True Independent Home Inspector

Like most home inspectors who have been around the block, I have encountered real estate agents who have tried to either undermine, down play, minimize or argue away many of the defects or issues found during an inspection. The more issues found, the more negotiations that may be required to finalize a sale or worst the sale may fall through. Many inspectors, especially new ones, find themselves perplexed when finding serious defects, for fear future inspection client referrals from the agent may be in jeopardy. As a result many inspectors learn to approach the home inspection with “kid gloves”, using calm and non-alarming language to explain away serious issues.

As home inspectors our job is to uncover and disclose defects, safety issues and other items that could cause harm or present the client with unanticipated expenses. We should be educating our clients to the best of our ability about the property condition. We should not be minimizing issues by making statements like; “a lot of homes have this issue”, nor should we be; “blowing stuff” out of proportion. Inspectors should clearly and accurately convey to the client the actual observed property conditions. Dealing with the findings is up to the parties involved with the sale, not the inspector. If the buyer, seller and agent can’t come to agreeable terms for the sale, it’s not the fault of the inspector.

So do you want an inspector who’s more concerned about future agent referrals than one who reports, without reservation, the actual property conditions? Hiring a “real” independent home inspector is one way to insure you will receive such an inspection and report.
Dennis Robitaille
MA License #007
NH License #111
Inspecting homes in MA, NH & ME since 1983.