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12-16-2008, 07:41 PM #1
What are the protocols for a re-inspection? How do you guys handle it if a client asks you to come back out to reinspect the place. (i.e. bank needs to make sure problems have been fixed before loan will be closed)
Situation happened to me recently and I had to do just that. Client wasnt sure why I charged a fee to come back out. I tried to explain that its his bank that wants these things fixed, it wasnt because of a problem that I missed. Anyway, it was my first fee paid inspection so I wasnt sure how others handle these types of situations.
12-16-2008, 08:05 PM #2
Brian, you are a bad, bad man. You are about to once again open up a big ol' can of stinky worms here with that question.
That question has been raised in the past with very lively debate. Some here do reinsp's some don't. I suggest you do a search on the topic here and read through some of the past posts. You will probably find it very informative and amusing.
As for me ... I do re-inspects as a service to clients and charge a small fee for it.
The big debate for many guys seems to be liability and the question of 'what' are you actually inspecting to 'what' standard.
Anyway ... dinners ready, gotta go, Let the debate begin
"The Code is not a ceiling to reach but a floor to work up from"
12-16-2008, 10:31 PM #3
The best way to do a reinspection is to have the bank out line what they want you to inspect. you should charge the same amount the you charge for the original inspection. get a new contract singed inspection and inform them that you will charge the same amount each time you come out and that fee is due before each inspection starts... do not inspect without the fee up front... the standard is in a workman like manner... would call it if it were on any other inspection... list condition that you can not see or thing that extend into inaccessible areas and that you offer no guarantee on any work completed by others... Thats the way i would do it... others may have other ways.
12-17-2008, 05:07 AM #4
Another inspector would have charged the guy a full inspection fee to inspect a few items. It took me 5 minutes and I charged a partial fee.
Anyway, I figured that this would make an intersting debate on here. Hopefully we can get some views on both sides
12-17-2008, 06:03 AM #5
I also do re-inspects as a service to clients and charge a fee for it. I always get them to sign a new contract explaining what I am going to do. Example:
A. Walk and Talk - I may only check one or two items and do not provide any documentation. I quote them an hourly rate.
B. Re-inspection of the items on the original summary - I do provide documentation and charge 40-50% of the original inspection fee. (percentage is based on the size of the summary)
I also put the following information in my contract and any written documentation:
This is not a home inspection as per the State of Arizona and does not follow the Arizona Standards of Professional PracticeŽ.
A re-inspection is an inspection of only the items on the original summary report. The inspection can only tell if the items are now functional and sometimes if proper methods and materials were used. Most repairs are internal and cannot be viewed. The re-inspection is a limited visual inspection and latent or hidden defects may still be present.
12-17-2008, 06:23 AM #6
I do most of the same as mentioned by the others. Small fee, only items on orignal report. I do not call it a reinspection as I am not preforming an inspection. I call it a "Repair Verification".
12-17-2008, 08:11 AM #7
I used to do them.
Then I found out my insurance company would not cover them.
Then they changed their policy and said I would be covered because it was an continuation of the original inspection (their position).
So, now I will do them, but really try to talk them out of doing them, and rely on receipts, etc. When I do them, I charge according to the amount of time I expect to be out there.
Today, I went out to look at a ridge vent repair. Took less than 10 minutes total from drive up to drive away. I did not charge my client, since he was a 4th time repeat customer, and has given my name to countless friends. I also found, since it is raining today, leaks along the ridge where the roofer messed up.
If he wants me to come back again, and I'm not going to be in the area (I was today), I will probably tell him he owes me a Starbucks or a Subway and leave it at that.
I also have a standard statement in my report that deals with re-inspections, and there will be a fee. I may change my standard contract and put something in there about re-inspections too.
12-17-2008, 08:23 AM #8
I avoid re-inspections for a variety of reasons. For one thing, I'm supposedly a generalist, and returning to the scene of the crime to pass judgement on work done by a specialist doesn't seem kosher.
Sometimes I use this explanation, which clients seem to understand:
Suppose your primary care physician (generalist) sends you to a dermatologist (specialist) because of a spot on your arm that might be cancerous. The dermatologist removes the spot. Do you now return to your primary care doc and say "Did he do that right?" No. The whole reason you went to the dermatologist in the first place is because he is supposed to know MORE about the problem than the generalist. If you want another opinion, you go to another specialist, not back down the ladder to a generalist.
"There is no exception to the rule that every rule has an exception." -James Thurber, writer and cartoonist (1894-1961)
12-17-2008, 08:50 AM #9
There're kind of two catagories... one is what I call a Completion Inspection. For example, somebody cuts a hole in the floor to open a previously inaccessible crawl space.
The other would be coming back to verify repairs. As you'll find here, a lot of us shy away from the latter. You have to figure there's been some problems associated with these since a lot of E/O companies deny coverage.
I think a lot of the problems have arisen from a lack of communication. Basically, elevating peoples expectation (or, not lowering it) as to what you're there to do.
If you do go back to verify work be VERY clear about exactly what you're there to do and not. Our standard disclaimer is that we're only there to verify that some work has been done. No determination as to the quality, completness or correctness of any work will be made.
Once you tell people that over the phone 3/4 of them decide not to have it done. The re-inspections are really best for low-tech repairs that are in a crawl space or attic where buyers and agents aren't really going to go - Has the dead animal been removed? Is the fan duct re-attached? - Things like that.
And, yes, we charge a fee... usually around $100.