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.
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Hawkeye Inspection Service, LLC