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  1. #1
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    Default New federal law for mandatory home inspections

    Has anyone heard of a new initiative, along or parallel with the new stimulus bill, regarding mandatory residential inspections? I was told that a Federal Bill has been introduced for this but am unable to find anything regarding this.

    Any information? Any links?

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  2. #2
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    Default Re: New federal law for mandatory home inspections

    I do know that in Austin, TX effective June 1, 2009 anyone selling their home serviced by Austin Energy will be REQUIRED to have an energy audit done if the home is over 10 yrs old. This means a full blower door and duct blower test as well as some CO2 testing and checking windows, insulation, solar screens, etc, to the tune of $300 and up. There are some other major cities (states?) requiring this as well and looks to be a possible trend.

    Here, only techs that are certified by RESNET or BPI will be allowed to conduct the tests. The local real estate school here is offering classes for $1650 to become certified through BPI. They prefer to have home inspectors and HVAC techs signing up for the classes. Of course, you will then need to purchase $5000+ in equipment to do the audits.

    At the moment there are about 4000+ homes on the market that will require those audits. So, I guess I'll be signing up for the classes. At least for awhile there will be a nice niche to supplement the slowing home inspection business.

    With Obama's push for energy efficiency this may be a very lucrative field in the near future if States start requiring these types of inspections.

    Austin Structural Inspections
    email: larson@austinstructural.com
    web: www.austinstructural.com

  3. #3
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    Default Re: New federal law for mandatory home inspections

    Hello Ken,

    I heard about the Austin deal. Energy audits and inspections are hot for new homes (Energy Star, etc.). As for existing homes, especially in this economic climate, audits are not that popular. After all, who wants to be told how inefficient their home is and how much they need to spend? About the only way audits on existing homes can take off is if they are free (local power company programs, etc.) or if they are mandated such as Austin is doing.

    What I was referring to above is an actual Federal mandate for inspections. If I hear about this from one or two people I take it with a grain of salt. However, the rumor (?) appears to be spreading. I could not find any references to it though.

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  4. #4
    Ron Bibler's Avatar
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    Default Re: New federal law for mandatory home inspections

    Infrared is going to be a big part of this Go Green stuff. all inspectors should be look that way... If not doing the I.R. at this time then getting up to speed on Infrared... the times a changing and this Green stuff will play a big part in it. Just about every home we inspect we see voids in the walls No insulation Bad installs of the duct work and poor distribution of the heat. And then we go over a new home with an IR Camera we can see the voids/
    A new home with the Energy efficient stamp... Not so fast...

    Best

    Ron


  5. #5
    Ron Bibler's Avatar
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    Default Re: New federal law for mandatory home inspections

    Quote Originally Posted by EmmanuelScanlan View Post
    Hello Ken,

    I heard about the Austin deal. Energy audits and inspections are hot for new homes (Energy Star, etc.). As for existing homes, especially in this economic climate, audits are not that popular. After all, who wants to be told how inefficient their home is and how much they need to spend? About the only way audits on existing homes can take off is if they are free (local power company programs, etc.) or if they are mandated such as Austin is doing.

    What I was referring to above is an actual Federal mandate for inspections. If I hear about this from one or two people I take it with a grain of salt. However, the rumor (?) appears to be spreading. I could not find any references to it though.
    I do WDO Inspection in Calif. FHA Has new mandated inspection for all new Loans. No getting around it..

    Best

    Ron


  6. #6
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    Default Re: New federal law for mandatory home inspections

    Quote Originally Posted by Ron Bibler View Post
    I do WDO Inspection in Calif. FHA Has new mandated inspection for all new Loans. No getting around it..

    Best

    Ron
    Ron,

    Do you know if that's just a Calf. thing or nationwide?

    thanks.....


  7. #7
    Ron Bibler's Avatar
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    Default Re: New federal law for mandatory home inspections

    Quote Originally Posted by Matt Fellman View Post
    Ron,

    Do you know if that's just a Calf. thing or nationwide?

    thanks.....
    FHA Loans Nationwide... Some of the Lenders are trying to find ways around it but they just hit the walls and call me...

    This is the Cert: we use in Calif. and this applies nationwide.

    FHA Clear Clause-Inspection:
    This is to certify that the above property has been inspected on the date indicated in accordance with the Calif. Structural Pest Control Act, and in compliance with Federal Housing Commitments, Condition #2A, Form #2800-5. No evidence of active infestation or infection was noted in the visible and accessible areas.

    They are asking me to do limited reports only to ID Termite. no other info.
    But they will soon get hit with the wall of FHA. This Cert: has been around longer then Me Goes back 30 year plus. FHA is going back to the old school day.

    Best

    Ron



  8. #8
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    Default Re: New federal law for mandatory home inspections

    Quote Originally Posted by Ken Larson View Post
    I do know that in Austin, TX effective June 1, 2009 anyone selling their home serviced by Austin Energy will be REQUIRED to have an energy audit done if the home is over 10 yrs old. This means a full blower door and duct blower test as well as some CO2 testing and checking windows, insulation, solar screens, etc, to the tune of $300 and up. There are some other major cities (states?) requiring this as well and looks to be a possible trend.

    Here, only techs that are certified by RESNET or BPI will be allowed to conduct the tests. The local real estate school here is offering classes for $1650 to become certified through BPI. They prefer to have home inspectors and HVAC techs signing up for the classes. Of course, you will then need to purchase $5000+ in equipment to do the audits.

    At the moment there are about 4000+ homes on the market that will require those audits. So, I guess I'll be signing up for the classes. At least for awhile there will be a nice niche to supplement the slowing home inspection business.

    With Obama's push for energy efficiency this may be a very lucrative field in the near future if States start requiring these types of inspections.
    I use to do "real" energy audits back in the early 1990's. Back then we were getting $250 to $300 per audit. With a blower door, duct blaster, prepping the home, doing the test, tearing everything down and then writing the report you will have about 4-5 hours per job, or about one house a day. The larger audit companies use to use techs in the field and then they would have a staff writing the reports. A good tech team could do a home in about two hours and then move on to the next, but this was without doing the reports and working with a two person team.

    Just not enough money in it to justify the time and equipment that is involved. I just can't see getting back into the energy audit business.

    Scott Patterson, ACI
    Spring Hill, TN
    www.traceinspections.com

  9. #9
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    Default Re: New federal law for mandatory home inspections

    Our provincial government is attempting to make energy audits mandatory as part of the Green wave.
    Home sellers face $300 'green' audit

    Province's clean-energy bill would raise hydro rates, promote alternative power and create 50,000 jobs

    February 24, 2009
    Rob Ferguson

    QUEEN'S PARK BUREAU

    Ontario residents won't be able to sell their houses or condos without first getting a home energy audit which now costs about $300 under the proposed new Green Energy Act.


    YourHome.ca - News & Features - Home sellers face $300 'green' audit , Province's clean-energy bill would raise hydro rates, promote alternative power and create 50,000 jobs


  10. #10
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    Default Re: New federal law for mandatory home inspections

    Quote Originally Posted by Scott Patterson View Post
    I use to do "real" energy audits back in the early 1990's. Back then we were getting $250 to $300 per audit. With a blower door, duct blaster, prepping the home, doing the test, tearing everything down and then writing the report you will have about 4-5 hours per job, or about one house a day. The larger audit companies use to use techs in the field and then they would have a staff writing the reports. A good tech team could do a home in about two hours and then move on to the next, but this was without doing the reports and working with a two person team.

    Just not enough money in it to justify the time and equipment that is involved. I just can't see getting back into the energy audit business.
    Scott,

    I hear you! We have "Auditors" in this area that are RESNET certified performing blower door tests, duct pressure tests and Infrared scans on 2500 Sq. Ft. homes for a mere $275. Talk about prostituting yourself!!!

    Then there are the larger companies using these people as sub-contractors. They may charge $400 - $500 for that same test scenario but the sub is only making $250 off of it. And the sub has to provide all their own equipment, insurance, etc., etc.

    I thought about entering the field but it can easily cost $8000 minimum just to get started. It becomes another issue that we are already facing now with the $99 Inspectors out there. Add to it the cities like Austin that mandate them will eventually, if not already, set the maximum fees and they will be ridiculously low. As the field of entrants grows even the current pricing structures will go out the window as the field of $99 Energy Auditors takes over. You just can't make a living that way!

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  11. #11
    Ted Menelly's Avatar
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    Default Re: New federal law for mandatory home inspections

    Quote Originally Posted by Ken Larson View Post
    I do know that in Austin, TX effective June 1, 2009 anyone selling their home serviced by Austin Energy will be REQUIRED to have an energy audit done if the home is over 10 yrs old. This means a full blower door and duct blower test as well as some CO2 testing and checking windows, insulation, solar screens, etc, to the tune of $300 and up. There are some other major cities (states?) requiring this as well and looks to be a possible trend.

    Here, only techs that are certified by RESNET or BPI will be allowed to conduct the tests. The local real estate school here is offering classes for $1650 to become certified through BPI. They prefer to have home inspectors and HVAC techs signing up for the classes. Of course, you will then need to purchase $5000+ in equipment to do the audits.

    At the moment there are about 4000+ homes on the market that will require those audits. So, I guess I'll be signing up for the classes. At least for awhile there will be a nice niche to supplement the slowing home inspection business.

    With Obama's push for energy efficiency this may be a very lucrative field in the near future if States start requiring these types of inspections.
    So, with the exception of the above highlight why would one need a 1650 course. Anyone can check low e windows, solar screening, insulation, co test etc. Why could one not just sit it a class for one day for a freshner and learn the whole blower deal.

    Sounds like a serious rip of with the class just being a big cash cow taking advantage of a whole lot of people.

    So 6500 in equipment and training for 300 per home you first 21 homes are just to recoup. As scott says, with the time involved it sounds like a big rip. Then what, they still need a full home inspection or do you thro that in for free to get the energy audit and you rip yourself more. Or does the min for any home/audit become 600 minimum for folks to come out of there pocket on top of everything else they have to come up with to buy a home. Might not sound like much but how about the negotiation to the seller to have these items fixed, It really sounds like it is getting so freakin deep just to by a home. Oh yeah then WDI on top of that. Now what 700 min on a 1200 sf slab home 12 years old. Or does the buyer wave a home inspection and then gets ripped off more because of all the other items in the home.

    I can give them an extremely fair duct an HVAC eval. I can tell them that their windows need caulking and a cheap tester for low e glass, and a good idea for solar screen , and weak insulation and co testing, ventilation, door weather stripping and, and, and, ???????????????????

    Sounds like a big rip. People are having a hard enough coming up with the down payment and all else.

    A blower test............................................ WHY????????

    I am telling you, what is going to happen is this is going to get thrown on the home inspector and the next thing is it will be mandatory to buy an IR camera and throw that in for free or another price on top of that.

    A home inspector already does a lot of the home energy audit or green audit. Is the home inspector going to have to co-ordinate that an HVAC tech come the same time as you. That is a big part of energy savings. Home inspectors only go so far with HVAC system.

    Oh well. I could go on all day. The demand for everything to buy a home is getting way out of control.

    Does that mean that everything found in a home inspection, energy audit, WDI, IR scan has to pass with flying colors or the folks won't get a loan.

    Like I said. It is getting way to deep on the demands to buy or sell a home.

    Last edited by Ted Menelly; 02-25-2009 at 10:14 AM.

  12. #12
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    Default Re: New federal law for mandatory home inspections

    Ted,

    I fully agree that NEW homes should be built to energy conservation standards. That is how change takes place and negative situations (energy waste) are reversed. However:

    "Sounds like a serious rip of with the class just being a big cash cow taking advantage of a whole lot of people."

    I agree with this 100%. Any intelligent individual can learn virtually anything on their own. As you said just give a couple day course and certify them or fail them. By the way, I don't know if that $1650 includes the testing, etc. What I read was this was going for another $250 - $500 for the proctored testing and on site test to evaluate your abilities. But hey, what the heck, this will help our current administration "SAVE or create 3.5 million jobs" (of course at who's expense?)!

    Your other points I agree with as well and have stated similar opinions above.




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  13. #13
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    Default Re: New federal law for mandatory home inspections

    When I tool the training it was through the University of Louisiana and the Department of Energy. Back in the 1980's to the mid 1990's the feds had all type of grant money for energy programs.

    The test was a proctored 3-4 hour exam. Then we had to perform 2 full energy audits out in the field. We had to find the homes and convince the homeowner that they needed this audit done on their home! Of course it was not very hard to sell a free energy audit.

    I did about 130 or so audits in about a years time. I just did not like doing them. The prep work and then the clean-up is a pain in the butt! One of the deciding factors of getting out doing them was when I sucked up a bunch of peel and stick floor tiles from a ladies kitchen while doing a test. So much for any profit on that job!

    I just don't see that many jobs being created from this, I could be wrong and you never know. We just need to get folks buying homes once again, and this would solve many of our problems.

    Scott Patterson, ACI
    Spring Hill, TN
    www.traceinspections.com

  14. #14
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    Default Re: New federal law for mandatory home inspections

    Ted,

    I went through RESNET Energy Rater training for $1500 and I thought it was a beneficial course. It included 2 inspections using a blower door and a duct blaster. I am now a RESNET Certified Energy Rater which allows me to certifiy new construction under the Energy Star label. Since I already inspect this new construction (under TRCC not TREC) my two required Energy Star inspections are completed at the same time. During my house final inspection I conduct the blower door and duct blaster tests. Energy Star certifications are $.25 - $.30 a sq ft. I think it is a good fit.


  15. #15
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    Default Re: New federal law for mandatory home inspections

    At least for the first year or two the energy audits should be a fairly lucrative field since "certified" auditors are currently few and far between. The city of Austin REQUIRES certification and all reports are posted and held with the city for future reference. This also will allow you to do the Energy Star inspections for the new home builders once you get certified.

    ALL homes over 10 yrs MUST have the audit done if they wish to sell their home. It's a captive market (until laws change, anyway) The Board of Realtors reports there are currently over 4000 on the market that will require the audits. And right now there are only 4 or 5 companies that have the RESNET or BPI certification.

    There is only ONE local school doing the training:
    The cost of certification is as follows:

    $995 - For the Building Performance Advantage Curriculum. Approx. 40 hours of classroom and field training.

    $250 - For the online final exam.

    $450 - One-on-one field exam. Includes equipment.

    Total cost $1695.00

    Infrared is NOT a requirement for the audit! At the moment only a blower door, CO2, and duct blaster test will be required.

    Austin Structural Inspections
    email: larson@austinstructural.com
    web: www.austinstructural.com

  16. #16
    Ted Menelly's Avatar
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    Default Re: New federal law for mandatory home inspections

    Quote Originally Posted by Ken Larson View Post
    At least for the first year or two the energy audits should be a fairly lucrative field since "certified" auditors are currently few and far between. The city of Austin REQUIRES certification and all reports are posted and held with the city for future reference. This also will allow you to do the Energy Star inspections for the new home builders once you get certified.

    ALL homes over 10 yrs MUST have the audit done if they wish to sell their home. It's a captive market (until laws change, anyway) The Board of Realtors reports there are currently over 4000 on the market that will require the audits. And right now there are only 4 or 5 companies that have the RESNET or BPI certification.

    There is only ONE local school doing the training:
    The cost of certification is as follows:

    $995 - For the Building Performance Advantage Curriculum. Approx. 40 hours of classroom and field training.

    $250 - For the online final exam.

    $450 - One-on-one field exam. Includes equipment.

    Total cost $1695.00

    Infrared is NOT a requirement for the audit! At the moment only a blower door, CO2, and duct blaster test will be required.
    Read the highlight.

    That is absolutely criminal. Any home sale can be as is. How can they possibly tell any seller of a home that they must spend hundreds for an energy audit before they sell there home.

    What is it, as is or not as is. In a home inspection the buyer can opt for a home inspection. In the sale of a home a seller MUST have and pay for an energy audit.

    Criminal is all I can say. Absolutely criminal. In my opinion all buyers should have a home inspection. After all the sale is based on their debt to income ratio. If there turns out to be multiple thousands in repairs needed then the folks borrow or spend on credit cards then they no longer fall in the debt to income ratio. But a seller must have and pay for an energy audit. I garrantee you it will go to court on that issue.

    Again, A blower duct blast test??????????????????????? A home inspection IF the buyer follows what most home inspectors advise will take care of a good portion of that.

    Any duct connection I can get to I inspect. If it is not strpped. taped. mastic I write it up. If I only see a few I refer that all duct connection have to be x x x . I also write up all windows, door weather stripping etc, etc, ventilation etc, etc, insulation, I have a low e tester for windows. If theyu are not atr least double pain and tight I writew it for an upgrade. etc etc etc etc.

    I just do not get it. I think this is illegal and will be stopped. God forbid if it does not, mark my words it will be mandatory that home inspectors get trained and do the energy audit. Guess what, out goes the home inspection and we all become energy auditors.

    Enough is enough. Somewhere some how it has to stop. It is getting way out of control.

    Scott said it perfectly.

    WE HAVE TO GET THE HOME SALES AND HOME INSPECTIONS BACK UP AGAIN . IN THE MEAN TIME CITIES AND THE PRESIDENT ARE ONLY HURTING THINGS AT THE MOMENT.

    It has to stop. Enough is enough.

    Just my opinion but I do believe it is a dam good one and I don't honestly think any can honestly deny it.


  17. #17
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    Default Re: New federal law for mandatory home inspections

    Look, nobody likes the requirement. It's all politically motivated in my view. The original plan called for not only an audit, but also REPAIRS! That was finally voted out by the city due to complaints by the Realtor's Association and homeowners. However, the requirement for the energy audit stuck. Sellers don't need to fix a darn thing, they just need to have the audit done to INFORM the seller as to the overall energy efficiency of the home. NO REPAIRS OR UPGRADES REQUIRED.

    But, the fact is that it is a requirement and someone is going to have to do them if the owner wants to sell their property. For me, since home inspections are down, I'm going to be doing the audits to supplement my income until home inspections pick back up. I attended one of the field exams and for what is required to complete the required audit and the report it took less than 2 hrs (1800sf home) and the cost will start at $300 for a single system home. I called a couple local companies that already do audits and got a range of $300 - $ 700 for a single system home.

    For the home inspectors who also do the audits there is the opportunity to do both inspections / audits at the same home and get paid for both. I feel I provide an excellent service as a home inspector and will provide and excellent audit as well. It's a matter of marketing and supply and demand. I certainly didn't vote for this requirement but it is here and I plan to adapt to the situation to support my family. My guess is that more and more cities will be doing the same thing in the very near future.

    Austin Structural Inspections
    email: larson@austinstructural.com
    web: www.austinstructural.com

  18. #18
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    Default Re: New federal law for mandatory home inspections

    Austin, several square miles of liberal utopia surrounded by reality.
    It is very easy to pass a law that spends someone else's money. The hard part is living with the consequences.

    Jim Luttrall
    www.MrInspector.net
    Plano, Texas

  19. #19
    Terry Sandmeier's Avatar
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    Default Re: New federal law for mandatory home inspections

    The entire sustainable building and green inishitive is an exciting and innovative direction we are turning to. Energy audits are going to be necessary to reduce the impact on our resources and environment. As the new change and promises that have been made going towards renewable energy and sustainable living; I saw opportunity to expand my business and hopefully make a few extra $$$. Like so many others, the words of inspiration left butterflies in my stomach and of many people and wholly embraced the green inishitive and the new prospects that could transpire from it. For me it was $$$. As things are now in the pipe and more I think about it, it does not sit well knowing the leadership is telling us and others what we have to (in this case to buy a house). Due diligence at buying a house and gathering information imperative to your decision is the home buyers duty and obligation and I believe home inspection are a must; I also believe I should not be forced to have an home inspection, this is my decision. The same for Energy Audits. Unfortunately, I do believe this is the way it is going to go and more focus indirect and direct will be on energy efficiency and there will be a greater market for these services.



  20. #20
    Ted Menelly's Avatar
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    Default Re: New federal law for mandatory home inspections

    Quote Originally Posted by Ken Larson View Post
    Look, nobody likes the requirement. It's all politically motivated in my view. The original plan called for not only an audit, but also REPAIRS! That was finally voted out by the city due to complaints by the Realtor's Association and homeowners. However, the requirement for the energy audit stuck. Sellers don't need to fix a darn thing, they just need to have the audit done to INFORM the seller as to the overall energy efficiency of the home. NO REPAIRS OR UPGRADES REQUIRED.

    But, the fact is that it is a requirement and someone is going to have to do them if the owner wants to sell their property. For me, since home inspections are down, I'm going to be doing the audits to supplement my income until home inspections pick back up. I attended one of the field exams and for what is required to complete the required audit and the report it took less than 2 hrs (1800sf home) and the cost will start at $300 for a single system home. I called a couple local companies that already do audits and got a range of $300 - $ 700 for a single system home.

    For the home inspectors who also do the audits there is the opportunity to do both inspections / audits at the same home and get paid for both. I feel I provide an excellent service as a home inspector and will provide and excellent audit as well. It's a matter of marketing and supply and demand. I certainly didn't vote for this requirement but it is here and I plan to adapt to the situation to support my family. My guess is that more and more cities will be doing the same thing in the very near future.
    I am not ragging you by any means in the slightest.

    Now that the added part says no one has to fix anything makes it a little better,

    But in saying that the buyer is going to get this disclosure and who do you think they are going to ask to bring he home up to par?

    I am certainly all for making money. Hell, I even like money.

    My inspections are down so bad from the internet appearing as if it were shut down that I am actually back out there like the rest of the inspector world it is making me sick.

    Shoot, I could no more afford right now the needed class ans equipment with it being so slow its a joke.

    Again. I am not ragging anyone for doing energy audits . I just think that the added disclosure of a crappy energy audit is put solely on the seller by law and demand.

    It is ahrd enough on most folks to buy a home and just as hard on the seller to sell a home with so few buyers out there. I will add once again that we do more or less an energy audit in doing a home inspection. I think if anything that there should be a bigger demand on a borrowing buyer to have a home inspection to justify to the lender that the home is worth the dollars appraised for. The appraisers and banks and idiot buyers buying homes for an inflated twice the value that got us into this mess. Yeah I know, the banks lending to those who could not afford the home but that was covered under banker/lenders.

    Obamas new deal with the home energy audit is going to cost billions for the audits and many more billions for the repairs. His justification on spending those billions is that we will save billions on energy. Yeah, and a hell of a long time to save those billions to be paid back to you. But the funny thing is. It will never be paid back to you because there will be stipulations that only a certain income bracket will get these freebees.

    I garantee that none of the folks on here will get a free energy audit and repairs. I was born and raised a dem but this is just a massive dem spending plan that they have always wanted to do. The bleeding heart club so they can be kept in office.

    On that note........9000 earmarks for crap in all states from both dems and repubs. What a freekin joke.

    The man who yelled all the way to the presidency about changing government and getting a control on spending and getting rid of pork pushes thru a massive spending plan where not much is going toward jump starting the economy. I truly believe at this point that we are going trillions (is that really even a word) into debt that will have little to know affect anymore than just letting the correction take its own road but we will be trillions more in debt.

    Uh Oh. Did I just go off on a rant or what?????????????????


  21. #21
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    Default Re: New federal law for mandatory home inspections

    Quote Originally Posted by Terry Sandmeier View Post
    The entire sustainable building and green ini****ive is an exciting and innovative direction we are turning to.
    Freudian slip?

    Jim Luttrall
    www.MrInspector.net
    Plano, Texas

  22. #22
    A.D. Miller's Avatar
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    Default Re: New federal law for mandatory home inspections

    Quote Originally Posted by Scott Patterson View Post
    I use to do "real" energy audits back in the early 1990's. Back then we were getting $250 to $300 per audit. With a blower door, duct blaster, prepping the home, doing the test, tearing everything down and then writing the report you will have about 4-5 hours per job, or about one house a day. The larger audit companies use to use techs in the field and then they would have a staff writing the reports. A good tech team could do a home in about two hours and then move on to the next, but this was without doing the reports and working with a two person team.

    Just not enough money in it to justify the time and equipment that is involved. I just can't see getting back into the energy audit business.
    Scott: Agreed. There are several guys I know of in my area who are sitting on $5K of useless equipment for that very reason. There is no money in it.


  23. #23
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    Default Re: New federal law for mandatory home inspections

    Austin, several square miles of liberal utopia surrounded by reality.
    Jim: Great quote. Other than the size of the spread, it describes the place where I live. Wouldn't have it any other way. . .


  24. #24
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    Default Re: New federal law for mandatory home inspections

    Quote Originally Posted by Ken Larson View Post
    But, the fact is that it is a requirement and someone is going to have to do them if the owner wants to sell their property. For me, since home inspections are down, I'm going to be doing the audits to supplement my income until home inspections pick back up. I attended one of the field exams and for what is required to complete the required audit and the report it took less than 2 hrs (1800sf home) and the cost will start at $300 for a single system home. I called a couple local companies that already do audits and got a range of $300 - $ 700 for a single system home.

    For the home inspectors who also do the audits there is the opportunity to do both inspections / audits at the same home and get paid for both. I feel I provide an excellent service as a home inspector and will provide and excellent audit as well. It's a matter of marketing and supply and demand. I certainly didn't vote for this requirement but it is here and I plan to adapt to the situation to support my family. My guess is that more and more cities will be doing the same thing in the very near future.
    Ken,

    I'm not knocking you and if you have the money to spend starting the business then go for it! I would hope that you have performed your research well though. As Aaron said above he knows several people sitting on $5k worth of equipment. I'm certainly not trying to convince you not to do it but consider these points:

    1. We are in tough economic times and people are much less likely to even want to spend money for an audit now than before.
    2. I've heavily marketed audits and many people do not want to pay even $250 for an audit to be told they need $XX thousands to repair or upgrade their home to eliminate the energy waste. If they don't have money now it is just cheaper, at least for the time being, to be a little hotter or colder in their homes, turn off lights, pay a little to have weatherstripping replaced, etc.
    3. Many of the audits being performed now are either from large companies who perform not only the audit but also the repairs as well. I've already seen companies that will either offer credits for the repairs if the client uses their services. Who would you use, the stand alone audit guy or someone ready to give you the repairs at a discount (perceived or real) as well?
    4. Some of these companies are giving the audits away (free or very low cost) just to get the back-end business of doing the repairs. You are doing the audits as a standalone and not with the repairs.
    5. As a licensed HI if you perform an audit and inspection on the home you will potentially run afoul of the TREC regulations if you try to offer the repair services as well.
    6. There are grants and programs out their that these larger companies are tapping into to supplement or pay for the actual audit so the client gets that for free. Some of these programs also help pay some of the repair costs as well. The company then makes more money on the repairs. I've checked these grants and programs out and they are designed for larger "one stop shopping" companies who do the whole package, audit and repairs. You would be fighting an uphill marketing battle to obtain business if you are not offering the repairs as well.
    7. Speak with the utility companies who also are tapping these government grants and tax credits to help their customers reduce energy. I have in an effort to potentially obtain some of that business. They too are only interested in the "one stop shop" type operation. Now that does not mean you can not subcontract the other work out but do you want to deal with that, doing the audits, doing inspections and anything else you have going?
    8. The cheapest it seems to enter this business is around $6K - $8K and that is for equipment and training/certification. The expense of marketing the service can escalate very quickly! Don't forget that you are competing with larger companies who already have established a presence with their primary business and are now just adding this onto the offerings.
    There is nothing wrong with giving it a try but you could wind up like Aaaron's aquaintances. The money you spend could easily be placed in expanding your inspection services to other offerings, less expensinve to offer, or even creating a sub-contract company to perform all of the repair work identified during these audits.

    Knowledge is power, but sharing knowledge brings peace!
    www.psinspection.com
    Texas License# 7593

  25. #25
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Ormond Beach, Florida
    Posts
    26,252

    Default Re: New federal law for mandatory home inspections

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Luttrall View Post
    Austin, several square miles of liberal utopia surrounded by reality.
    It is very easy to pass a law that spends someone else's money. The hard part is living with the consequences.
    Quote Originally Posted by A.D. Miller View Post
    Jim: Great quote. Other than the size of the spread, it describes the place where I live. Wouldn't have it any other way. . .

    Aaron,

    If those guys would just start paying attention and stop their grumbling about wanting W back and throwing the entire country deeper into the pit than he already threw it ... maybe all those areas of "utopia" would spread and converge, re-creating the best country in the world again.



    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  26. #26
    Ted Menelly's Avatar
    Ted Menelly Guest

    Default Re: New federal law for mandatory home inspections

    Boys, boys, boys

    Please stop

    Mr Obama has already proven that he is the same as everyone that gets into office. I wish him all the best but seriously think of the outlandish spending that is going on. It is a spending package that the dems have wanted all along.

    George was such a minute part of the spend to keep the 2000 recession from overwhelming us. No one wanted the recession and everyone was involved in the keeping it from happening.

    Dems, repubs. Seriously stop and seriously think about it. 9000 earmarks and all the dems have to say, as well as our president is "this is the way things are done in Washington and

    "Look, the repubs have a large portion of these earmarks as well"

    Business as usual gents. Business as usual. What a cop-out.

    Sooner or later folks you are going to listen to the whole campaign promises and find out they all just went out the window. He is no different than most elected officials.

    He wants to spend his way into oblivion. He is using the cover of jump starting the world economy. He says nothing now about the 9000 earmark. He talks of the tremendous amount of programs he wants to pay for and in the next sentence he talks about how he is going to pay down the deficit and get spending in control.

    It does not stop. A thousand new programs but he wants to get spending in control. Seriously, are you listening at all.

    It is business as usual. Just business as usual.

    He wants to decrease spending in Iraq but increae spending in Afganistan but he wants to cut back the war spending so he can spend the money somewhere else. What the............................................... .......

    What is it that you folks don't or do not want to see. Save, save, save here but spend, spend, spend there, The spending is going to so far exceed the savings it is a joke.

    Look at it. Go back over the past couple years. Go back over the campaign promises and what he was running on. It has already gone out the window.

    Business as usual. Stop praising the flase God and start praying to one of your Gods that he finally sees the light and gets back into reality.

    Oh, thats right, some don't believe in God or Gods. Then I suggest you put your right hand on the code book and pray to the almighty code book that Mr President sees the light before it is to late.

    Again. I want him to work out. It will only do us all good. I do not want him to fail. I think he is a very intelligent man that needs to stop looking in the mirror and practising his speeches until they just sound so convincing and start making speeches that have real substance and reality to them.

    Actully I want him to go out there for me and do some marketing. I would be an inspection company with 20 inspectors and retire happily ever after because the way he keeps dancing around and sounding all convincing with no subtance and everyone looking at him like the greatest thing since sliced bread, he would be the best marketer than anyone I could possibly think of.

    My morning rant. Inspections for the weekend but nothing today.


  27. #27
    A.D. Miller's Avatar
    A.D. Miller Guest

    Default Re: New federal law for mandatory home inspections

    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Menelly View Post
    Boys, boys, boys

    Please stop

    Mr Obama has already proven that he is the same as everyone that gets into office. I wish him all the best but seriously think of the outlandish spending that is going on. It is a spending package that the dems have wanted all along.

    George was such a minute part of the spend to keep the 2000 recession from overwhelming us. No one wanted the recession and everyone was involved in the keeping it from happening.

    Dems, repubs. Seriously stop and seriously think about it. 9000 earmarks and all the dems have to say, as well as our president is "this is the way things are done in Washington and

    "Look, the repubs have a large portion of these earmarks as well"

    Business as usual gents. Business as usual. What a cop-out.

    Sooner or later folks you are going to listen to the whole campaign promises and find out they all just went out the window. He is no different than most elected officials.

    He wants to spend his way into oblivion. He is using the cover of jump starting the world economy. He says nothing now about the 9000 earmark. He talks of the tremendous amount of programs he wants to pay for and in the next sentence he talks about how he is going to pay down the deficit and get spending in control.

    It does not stop. A thousand new programs but he wants to get spending in control. Seriously, are you listening at all.

    It is business as usual. Just business as usual.

    He wants to decrease spending in Iraq but increae spending in Afganistan but he wants to cut back the war spending so he can spend the money somewhere else. What the............................................... .......

    What is it that you folks don't or do not want to see. Save, save, save here but spend, spend, spend there, The spending is going to so far exceed the savings it is a joke.

    Look at it. Go back over the past couple years. Go back over the campaign promises and what he was running on. It has already gone out the window.

    Business as usual. Stop praising the flase God and start praying to one of your Gods that he finally sees the light and gets back into reality.

    Oh, thats right, some don't believe in God or Gods. Then I suggest you put your right hand on the code book and pray to the almighty code book that Mr President sees the light before it is to late.

    Again. I want him to work out. It will only do us all good. I do not want him to fail. I think he is a very intelligent man that needs to stop looking in the mirror and practising his speeches until they just sound so convincing and start making speeches that have real substance and reality to them.

    Actully I want him to go out there for me and do some marketing. I would be an inspection company with 20 inspectors and retire happily ever after because the way he keeps dancing around and sounding all convincing with no subtance and everyone looking at him like the greatest thing since sliced bread, he would be the best marketer than anyone I could possibly think of.

    My morning rant. Inspections for the weekend but nothing today.
    Ted: Like all Republicans, you are out of your depth. Pick a subject you are familiar with and begin again.


  28. #28
    Ted Menelly's Avatar
    Ted Menelly Guest

    Default Re: New federal law for mandatory home inspections

    Morning Aaron

    I did expect for you to come back but you disappointed me with such a short reply

    Of course nothing to come back on because I am not a Republican or a Democrat in particular and what I said about campaign promisses and business as usual etc, etc there was really nothing to come back with

    It is just an all around sad situation


  29. #29
    A.D. Miller's Avatar
    A.D. Miller Guest

    Default Re: New federal law for mandatory home inspections

    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Menelly View Post
    Morning Aaron

    I did expect for you to come back but you disappointed me with such a short reply

    Of course nothing to come back on because I am not a Republican or a Democrat in particular and what I said about campaign promisses and business as usual etc, etc there was really nothing to come back with

    It is just an all around sad situation
    Ted: I have to keep it down - the attitude, that is - to a mild roar. Bursting into flames would not be good for this pile of paperwork I'm attempting to stare down.


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