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  1. #1
    Tech 9 Home Inspections's Avatar
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    Default Church Inspection

    I have a meeting tomorrow with Springs Church in Winnipeg, Manitoba tomorrow @725 Lagimodiere ave. They have asked me to check out the church. The roof on the church has ice damming along the eaves and the downspouts are frozen right up. The building is 35,000 sq ft. I have not done an inspection of this size before. I was wondering if I could get some tips from some of my brothers. I was wondering what I should charge for this service? Any advice or helpful tips would be appreciated.


    Thank you,

    Jarrod Northage

    Tech 9 Home Inspections


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  2. #2
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    Default Re: Church Inspection

    Things like this are a case by case basis.... basically, I figure out how long I think it will take and charge accordingly (or, just bid it on an hourly basis which works too). I tend to break things down into how many standard home inspection slots it takes up and how much I would charge for that.

    A full day is two slots @ $350 per slot for example. In my experience jobs like this tend to be easier and take less time than I think from just looking at the building specs. For example, even though the church is 35,000 sq ft, most of it is likely just a large open space.... how long can that really take?

    I've done a lot of projects like this over the years and usually find they're profitable.... and, if nothing else, a nice break from the mundane house after house after house that all seem to look alike after awhile.


  3. #3
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    Default Re: Church Inspection

    Quote Originally Posted by Matt Fellman View Post
    Things like this are a case by case basis.... basically, I figure out how long I think it will take and charge accordingly (or, just bid it on an hourly basis which works too). I tend to break things down into how many standard home inspection slots it takes up and how much I would charge for that.

    A full day is two slots @ $350 per slot for example. In my experience jobs like this tend to be easier and take less time than I think from just looking at the building specs. For example, even though the church is 35,000 sq ft, most of it is likely just a large open space.... how long can that really take?

    I've done a lot of projects like this over the years and usually find they're profitable.... and, if nothing else, a nice break from the mundane house after house after house that all seem to look alike after awhile.


    I don't have a set price to charge for a commercial inspection. If I quoted
    .10 per sqft would that seem acceptable to most. I'm curious as to what
    you and others have charged for this sevice at a similar sq footage. At this point I'm not sure how long the inspection will take. Ultimately the church wants to know what choices are available to stop the ice damming at the eaves. The roof is metal sheathing. And the building is about 5-8 years old.


  4. #4
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    Default Re: Church Inspection

    Quote Originally Posted by Tech 9 Home Inspections View Post
    I don't have a set price to charge for a commercial inspection. If I quoted
    .10 per sqft would that seem acceptable to most. I'm curious as to what
    you and others have charged for this sevice at a similar sq footage. At this point I'm not sure how long the inspection will take. Ultimately the church wants to know what choices are available to stop the ice damming at the eaves. The roof is metal sheathing. And the building is about 5-8 years old.
    $3500 seems a bit excessive for essentially a roof and attic inspection, but if you can get it and can eventually answer for it, go for it!


  5. #5
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    Default Re: Church Inspection

    Quote Originally Posted by Benjamin Thompson View Post
    $3500 seems a bit excessive for essentially a roof and attic inspection, but if you can get it and can eventually answer for it, go for it!

    I was also asked to scan the ceiling with the Bcam, it sounds excessive, but it could take a couple of days, same with reports. What would you charge?

    D.K. Bennett & Associates

    At this link is a pic of the church. Its the 5th pic down.


  6. #6
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    Default Re: Church Inspection

    If the time it will take to inspect is unknown, I would charge an hourly rate.

    By the way, you may want to not post the address of the property you will be inspecting. I made the mistake a couple weeks ago of not changing the file name on some pics I posted here and the address showed up in the file name for the pics. Somebody on this board took it upon themself to look up the name of listing agent for the property and called them essentially telling on me.

    Last edited by Nick Ostrowski; 02-07-2011 at 08:24 PM.
    "It takes a big man to cry. It takes an even bigger man to laugh at that man". - Jack Handey

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    Default Re: Church Inspection

    Obviously you need to make at least what you would filling those time slots. You need a clear understanding of what their expectations are before you can budget the time you will need. If they really only care about the ice issue, and you are comfortable doing that inspection, then bill them an hourly rate (or flat rate) to cover your time.

    I have inspected many churches, and they have all had a bunch of bathrooms, a large kitchen and varied heating systems. They can be very time consuming if you are doing the full inspection. I have also found that some churches rely on their members to do a lot of the repairs and maintenance, and we all know what that can lead to.


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    Default Re: Church Inspection

    Jarrod,

    Ice damming is caused by heat that finds its way into the attic and melts snow on the roof. The water from the melted snow flows down the roof to the overhang (which is colder than then warm roof over the attic) and refreezes forming a dam.

    If I were you I would look for areas of air infiltration or missing insulation. If you see dirty insulation that could be an indication of air movement through the insulation. (The insulation acts like a filter when air passes through it.) Move the insulation aside and look for a hole, chase, gap, plumbing or electrical penetration, electrical box, etc.

    "Baseball is like church. Many attend but few understand." Leo Durocher
    Bruce Breedlove
    www.avaloninspection.com

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Church Inspection

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Feldmann View Post
    Obviously you need to make at least what you would filling those time slots. You need a clear understanding of what their expectations are before you can budget the time you will need. If they really only care about the ice issue, and you are comfortable doing that inspection, then bill them an hourly rate (or flat rate) to cover your time.

    I have inspected many churches, and they have all had a bunch of bathrooms, a large kitchen and varied heating systems. They can be very time consuming if you are doing the full inspection. I have also found that some churches rely on their members to do a lot of the repairs and maintenance, and we all know what that can lead to.

    Thanks for the information it was helpful. I'll try to remember not to post certain things, like an address, etc.


  10. #10
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    Default Re: Church Inspection

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Feldmann View Post
    Obviously you need to make at least what you would filling those time slots. You need a clear understanding of what their expectations are before you can budget the time you will need. If they really only care about the ice issue, and you are comfortable doing that inspection, then bill them an hourly rate (or flat rate) to cover your time.

    I have inspected many churches, and they have all had a bunch of bathrooms, a large kitchen and varied heating systems. They can be very time consuming if you are doing the full inspection. I have also found that some churches rely on their members to do a lot of the repairs and maintenance, and we all know what that can lead to.
    Amen!

    Jim Luttrall
    www.MrInspector.net
    Dallas, Texas

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Church Inspection

    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce Breedlove View Post
    Jarrod,

    Ice damming is caused by heat that finds its way into the attic and melts snow on the roof. The water from the melted snow flows down the roof to the overhang (which is colder than then warm roof over the attic) and refreezes forming a dam.

    If I were you I would look for areas of air infiltration or missing insulation. If you see dirty insulation that could be an indication of air movement through the insulation. (The insulation acts like a filter when air passes through it.) Move the insulation aside and look for a hole, chase, gap, plumbing or electrical penetration, electrical box, etc.

    I will probably come across a huge amount of pot lights as well, I'll post what I find at a later date.


  12. #12
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    Default Re: Church Inspection

    Quote Originally Posted by Tech 9 Home Inspections View Post
    I was also asked to scan the ceiling with the Bcam, it sounds excessive, but it could take a couple of days, same with reports. What would you charge?

    D.K. Bennett & Associates

    At this link is a pic of the church. Its the 5th pic down.

    If you are thinking it will only take a couple of days at best for this inspection the report will more than likely be pretty short I am not sure how you will justify 3500 for a check to be written out to you. As has been said already the vast majority of the inspection will be wide open spaces. It would be great to get it but at 16 hours (which I doubt it will take) you would be thinking a bit high of yourself. Is it really worth over 200 an hour and 16 hours or more of your time.

    Think of findings in that church. It is not like inspecting an apartment building. Your name will more than likely get spread around a good bit to potential home buyers but if they are thinking you charge 218.00 an hours for an inspection you may not get that word spread past the writing of the check.

    Making good money is one thing but there are times to make that money and times to make money of less money.

    218x40 hours a week times 52 weeks is $453,440.00 a year. Half that (almost a 1/4 mil a year) for a home inspector is great money. How much can one put out what they are worth.

    I doubt it will be 2 full days of inspecting and reporting for one man.. But hey, good luck.

    Ted Menelly, Castle Home Inspection Services
    www.inspectmycastle.com
    Fort Worth, Keller, Southlake, Plano, Flower Mound, DFW, TX

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Church Inspection

    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Menelly View Post
    If you are thinking it will only take a couple of days at best for this inspection the report will more than likely be pretty short I am not sure how you will justify 3500 for a check to be written out to you. As has been said already the vast majority of the inspection will be wide open spaces. It would be great to get it but at 16 hours (which I doubt it will take) you would be thinking a bit high of yourself. Is it really worth over 200 an hour and 16 hours or more of your time.

    Think of findings in that church. It is not like inspecting an apartment building. Your name will more than likely get spread around a good bit to potential home buyers but if they are thinking you charge 218.00 an hours for an inspection you may not get that word spread past the writing of the check.

    Making good money is one thing but there are times to make that money and times to make money of less money.

    218x40 hours a week times 52 weeks is $453,440.00 a year. Half that (almost a 1/4 mil a year) for a home inspector is great money. How much can one put out what they are worth.

    I doubt it will be 2 full days of inspecting and reporting for one man.. But hey, good luck.
    Its just a number I'm throwing out there. I totally understand what you're saying. I don't want to charge to much, but I dont want to sell myself short either. Like other posters, Ill either charge by the hour, or offer a flat rate after I take a closer look tomorrow. Since it is a Church, with a huge congragation, it could be good for referalls, who knows perhaps I'll donate 10% back to the Church.


  14. #14
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    Default Re: Church Inspection

    Thinking of my own church, and the ones I have inspected, they have not been mostly wide open spaces. Sure the sanctuary is a big room, and maybe there is a gym or fellowship hall or assembly rooms, but they also usually have a bunch of school rooms, child care facilities, store room after store room, offices and bathrooms.

    Depending on the age and condition, I could see a 35,000 SF church taking more than 2 days to inspect for one person. I spent two days inspecting a mortuary that was only about 8,000 SF, but it was 100 years old. I spent 1.5 days writing the report.

    I agree about billing high too. Most church jobs have lead to several other home inspections. One church board was so impressed with my report, they decided to have all of the church owned houses inspected - they owned 8.

    This is a great potential for generating additional business with some good will. Give them a fair price, and it will probably get you back more in return.


  15. #15
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    Default Re: Church Inspection

    Quote Originally Posted by Tech 9 Home Inspections View Post
    Thanks for the information it was helpful. I'll try to remember not to post certain things, like an address, etc.

    Might be a good idea to see if you can get Brian to delete the post with the church's address in it.

    Last edited by Sam Sloane; 02-08-2011 at 05:17 AM.

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    Default Re: Church Inspection

    Quote Originally Posted by Tech 9 Home Inspections View Post
    I was also asked to scan the ceiling with the Bcam, it sounds excessive, but it could take a couple of days, same with reports. What would you charge?

    D.K. Bennett & Associates

    At this link is a pic of the church. Its the 5th pic down.
    That is alot of building and doesn't look like a big open space to me. If I were doing a full inspection I don't think I could do it in 2 days. I was thinking you were just inspecting roofs and attics.
    That roofing company seems pretty proud of that roof, have they called them?


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    Default Re: Church Inspection

    I like Matt's approach as far as using half day blocks. That's pretty similar to what I would do, or just use an hourly rate.

    Jim Robinson
    New Mexico, USA

  18. #18
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    Default Re: Church Inspection

    Quote Originally Posted by Benjamin Thompson View Post
    That is alot of building and doesn't look like a big open space to me. If I were doing a full inspection I don't think I could do it in 2 days. I was thinking you were just inspecting roofs and attics.
    That roofing company seems pretty proud of that roof, have they called them?
    The Church has not called the roofing company yet. I will be inspecting the attic spaces. I might recommend calling the roofing company if it warrants a call. I'll check to see if there has been any water intrusion
    in the space, check insulation, note roof penetrations, lack of insulation around duct work etc, and then make recommendations.

    Jarrod


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    Default Re: Church Inspection

    Quote Originally Posted by Tech 9 Home Inspections View Post
    Its just a number I'm throwing out there. I totally understand what you're saying. I don't want to charge to much, but I dont want to sell myself short either. Like other posters, Ill either charge by the hour, or offer a flat rate after I take a closer look tomorrow. Since it is a Church, with a huge congragation, it could be good for referalls, who knows perhaps I'll donate 10% back to the Church.
    Huge congregation....I don't think they need the 10% back

    Ted Menelly, Castle Home Inspection Services
    www.inspectmycastle.com
    Fort Worth, Keller, Southlake, Plano, Flower Mound, DFW, TX

  20. #20
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    Default Re: Church Inspection

    I once inspected a church that looked "normal' for a church building with small school attached,from the outside. Quoted a price and it was accepted. The church and school had been added onto several times over the years, it turned out. One area of the building that was actually the original, exterior, office area was now totally surrounded by the rest of the new additions. Each addition had its own furnace and A/C. After a closer look it was discovered that the entire building had 12 furnaces or package units! To speed the process I had hired a heating contractor/friend to do the HVAC part of the inspection and when we discovered the number of furnaces we had to re-negotiate the inspection price with the church person. They understood and agreed but it was touchy.

    The moral of the story is that before quoting a final price, visit the site and take a thorough tour to make sure it is what it appears to be.

    Beacon Inspection Services
    Proudly Serving the Greater Henderson and Las Vegas Valley Area in Southern Nevada!
    Like Beacon On Facebook

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    Default Re: Church Inspection

    Excellent advice Bob. I almost always visit commercial jobs before I give them a quote.


  22. #22
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    Default Re: Church Inspection

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Feldmann View Post
    Excellent advice Bob. I almost always visit commercial jobs before I give them a quote.
    I was there this afternoon and did just that. This new age church used to be a bus terminal for a touring company. It too has been added on to. Where the addition meets the original building I found bubbling paint on the painted ceiling surface, also found wallpaper bubbling as well. In this particular location a bulk head extends vertically up the wall, and at the edges of the bulk head is wear I found excessive moisture. I brought my Surveymaster to confirm. Long story short, I will start tomorrow. They accepted my offer, I'm looking forward to this inspection. The church has a scissor lift and thats a huge bonus for the high ceilings.

    Jarrod


  23. #23
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    Default Re: Church Inspection

    Quote Originally Posted by Tech 9 Home Inspections View Post
    I was there this afternoon and did just that. This new age church used to be a bus terminal for a touring company. It too has been added on to. Where the addition meets the original building I found bubbling paint on the painted ceiling surface, also found wallpaper bubbling as well. In this particular location a bulk head extends vertically up the wall, and at the edges of the bulk head is wear I found excessive moisture. I brought my Surveymaster to confirm. Long story short, I will start tomorrow. They accepted my offer, I'm looking forward to this inspection. The church has a scissor lift and thats a huge bonus for the high ceilings.

    Jarrod
    I'm inspecting a church and my approach has been to do a bit at a time. I've been at it over a few months (they're in no hurry as I warned them this can take time as the church also has a day nursery in the building..) also snow was a problem to check drinage & water issues. I prepared a proper offer and contract based on an hourly rate. I'm using thermal imaging to scan the enveloppe. Not covering the roof and any specialized items outside my mandate (that I identify) will be referred to qualified contractors.


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