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  1. #1
    Jeff Roberson's Avatar
    Jeff Roberson Guest

    Talking New Real Estate Inspector, Las Vegas

    Hello Everyone!
    I was hoping for anyone's advise or tips on starting my new Home Inspector's business. I've completed all my training and I am just waiting for my background check to come back so I can finalize my license.
    I'm very excited to get started and I have no time to waste.
    I was hoping to get input from other inspectors who have established businesses and who would not mind offering a few suggestions on how to get started.
    I have done my fair share of research and have several ideas of my own, however I am certain that input from other professional's will be the most valuable information I can get.
    Thanks in advance for all of your input.
    Regards,
    Jeff Roberson

    Similar Threads:
    Inspection Referral SOC

  2. #2
    Join Date
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    Default Re: New Real Estate Inspector, Las Vegas

    Since you have already spent your money, talking you out of it is probably falling on deaf ears so do a search here. No matter what the inspection school told you, the people here will shoot it straight without pulling punches,
    One bit of advice from me though, "don't quit your day job unless you have 3 years of living expenses saved up or have other means of support (wife with a good job, etc.)
    Do the search here since this has been covered at least once a month as long as I have been hitting this site. Lots of good information if you will read and take heed.
    Good luck.

    Jim Luttrall
    www.MrInspector.net
    Plano, Texas

  3. #3
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    Default Re: New Real Estate Inspector, Las Vegas

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Luttrall View Post
    Do the search here since this has been covered at least once a month as long as I have been hitting this site. Lots of good information if you will read and take heed.
    Good luck.
    More like once a week if not more! For some reason folks are coming out of the woodwork to become a home inspector; problem is that folks are buying homes like the use to do. The lenders have a novel concept now; they require a down payment and good credit! Just last week I had two calls from folks who just got their license asking if I was hiring! Actually, it might have been the same person and they had their wife or girlfriend call to see if I was telling the truth!

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

  4. #4
    daniel nantell's Avatar
    daniel nantell Guest

    Default Re: New Real Estate Inspector, Las Vegas

    Keep your golf clubs nearby, you may have time to play a few rounds in between your 4 or 5 homes inspections per day.


  5. #5
    Ron Bibler's Avatar
    Ron Bibler Guest

    Default Re: New Real Estate Inspector, Las Vegas

    Its a good thing your not in Ricks area. Or he would be like looking for you

    1 out of 10 will make it past the first year or 2. that just the name of the game...

    Santa Rosa California Home Inspection - Exterminating & Thermal Imaging

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    Santa Rosa California Home Inspection - Exterminating & Thermal Imaging

    Best

    Ron

    Last edited by Ron Bibler; 10-06-2009 at 02:14 PM.

  6. #6
    Jeff Roberson's Avatar
    Jeff Roberson Guest

    Default Re: New Real Estate Inspector, Las Vegas

    I'll be honest, this is not the input I was hoping for.

    Thanks Ron for the 88 Marketing Tips, I appreciate it. I especially liked #5, "Shamelessly go with whatever works....As long as it's moral, ethical, and legal!" That's me!

    It's not helpful for anyone to sugar coat any advise and I do want as much straight talk as possible. I will continue to research here on this site for more input, thanks for the tip.

    Here's the deal though, I did not quit my job, I was laid off. I have over 15 years of mixed construction experience and consider myself to be well rounded in this market. However, I'm in a state that has one of the highest unemployment rates(13.4) and trying to find a job in the construction industry has proven to be futile. I thought it was reasonable to consider a profession in real estate inspection considering the fact that Nevada also has one of the highest number of existing, unoccupied bank owned homes in the country. With most banks requiring a home inspection prior to a loan and the despicable condition of most REO homes, it seemed sensible to pursue this career change.

    I can't stay in the "woodwork" any longer and I will contact EVERY local inspector to inquire about any possible openings. Don't worry Scott, I don't plan on moving to the great state of Tennessee anytime soon(Sorry about those Titans) so you wont have to worry about a call from this "folk".

    Hey Danny, sarcasm aside, great idea on the golfing tip. I'll settle for two inspections a day with a tee time in the afternoon. Best advise yet!

    It's been interesting, keep the advise and "whatever" coming, I look forward to it.

    Jeff


  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Plano, Texas
    Posts
    4,170

    Default Re: New Real Estate Inspector, Las Vegas

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Roberson View Post
    Hey Danny, sarcasm aside, great idea on the golfing tip. I'll settle for two inspections a day with a tee time in the afternoon. Best advise yet!
    Jeff
    If you have two inspections per day and do a decent job, you won't have time for that afternoon game of golf. Two per day for me means burning the midnight oil to get the reports out.
    Leave @ 7AM, drive an hour, inspect 2-3 hours, drive another hour, inspect 2-3 hours, drive another hour home, write the first 2 hour report, write the second 2 hour report. That's an 11-13 hour day with no breaks for lunch, supper, etc. Oh yeah, don't forget to do the bank deposit, pay the bills, do the taxes, do marketing, clean the truck, continuing ed, during the "down time". Man we inspectors have it made!

    Jim Luttrall
    www.MrInspector.net
    Plano, Texas

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    Rockwall Texas
    Posts
    4,519

    Default Re: New Real Estate Inspector, Las Vegas

    Yeah as a Home Inspector, I feel like all I do is deal with the negative aspects of a home and kill everyones dreams of homeownership. The bad guy I get called all the time.

    Makes you wonder why anyone wants to jump into this line of work. You have no friends other than the fellows on this board cause you have no time for a life outside of inspecting. Am I right or wrong guys?

    I've applied for the messenger of Death position as giving out bad news seems to be my forte. Wonder what the pay is?

    rick


  9. #9
    David Argabright's Avatar
    David Argabright Guest

    Default Re: New Real Estate Inspector, Las Vegas

    As much as I hate to admit it I've got to give a big "AMEN" to Jim amd Rick's comments. These days I'm too busy making a living to make a life.

    It's deer bow season and I can't take time to head to the woods for an evening hunt. Forget family time except for a quick late dinner before cranking out another report.

    I've had to turn down inspections and refer them to others. When the phone rings I even find myself hoping that someone is calling to cancel so I can try to catch up. That's why I'm here this morning.

    And now it's raining. GREAT.....Rain gear and slipping off roofs again. Tracking grass and mud into the house.

    Then come the slow times when I have friends call me just to be sure my phone is still working.

    And with everyting else that's going on, here I am wasting time chating with you guys instead of doing something useful. Have to go....... must catch up....must catch up....must catch up.....

    Anyway JEFF. Good luck to you. Study, work dilligently, be honest, market, develop a client referral base, and take all the advice you can from those that have been there before you. Hope that someday you are hoping that the person on the other end of the phone is calling to cancel an inspection.


  10. #10
    Ted Menelly's Avatar
    Ted Menelly Guest

    Default Re: New Real Estate Inspector, Las Vegas

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Roberson View Post
    Hello Everyone!
    I was hoping for anyone's advise or tips on starting my new Home Inspector's business. I've completed all my training and I am just waiting for my background check to come back so I can finalize my license.
    I'm very excited to get started and I have no time to waste.
    I was hoping to get input from other inspectors who have established businesses and who would not mind offering a few suggestions on how to get started.
    I have done my fair share of research and have several ideas of my own, however I am certain that input from other professional's will be the most valuable information I can get.
    Thanks in advance for all of your input.
    Regards,
    Jeff Roberson
    This is about as simple as it gets

    You will be working for yourself. You are totally responsible for yourself. You will be doing all the marketing, quoting, getting future referrals, collecting money, balancing your account, buying business insurance, replacing laptops when you dump a cup of coffee over it, the working late and on weekends, the no working late and working on weekends, cell phones, scheduling, office equipment and supplies, vehicle maintenance and repair, signage, etc etc etc etc etc

    Sometimes you will be to busy. Sometimes you will have no business. Your fellow inspectors doing what ever they can to keep you from getting the work. Dealing with the relentless price shoppers.

    To cut this short, and I could go on all day, you are not just waking up every day, taking your shower, getting dressed and going to work that someone else already did all the work to get and then come home and do as you wish.

    That might sound like I hate my job but I will be honest with you.....I love my job probably more than anyone you ever met that loves their job.

    I am just telling you that it is not a care free job. It may be, the actual work, the easiest job you ever did in your life. Some find this to be a difficult job. Myself, I laugh at that everyday. This is not a tough job even in the slightest degree. It is tough to make sure you have and keep a job as in working all the time. The actual get there and perform a home inspection...seriously...in that aspect, if you do it right, you will be laughing all the way to the bank.

    Now, if you have a partner in life that can handle some of all the bull you have to go thru to keep working then your will be walking around with a stupid s**t eating grin on your face while you are working and inspecting.

    As far as the others go about doing reports all night.....That is their preference. I try to arrange it for all my clients to come at the end of the inspection so I can inspect and report as I go so when I am done I am done. A very large percentage of inspections I can complete the report on sight. It depends on your area. If I was still in Mass instead of Texas I would be doing most of my report at the house. ere in Texas a very large amount of homes I do are very new and a slab, no basements and very few crawls. The rest of the reports that I do not finish on sight just need details and pictures added but certainly not the entire report. I will not liver my life just for a job and remove all chance of having a home life because I inspect all day and do reports all night. I would rather be hanging with family and or friends or just watching some tube.

    To rap it up

    Getting and keeping yourself in work is a bitch.

    Doing the actual inspecting and report (in most cases) will be the best job you ever had. If you could be so lucky to get to the point of 8 inspection a week even if they are just tiny homes at your minimum price you can make more money than most folks you know.

    You do not want to do 10 to 12 a week. Sure the money is good but you will be dying a slow death (not kidding about that)

    I would love 8 every week (does not happen throughout the year) This week would have been my best week in the past year at ten but that got cut down to 6 by the time paper work was not ready or deals fell thru or they had to get a little more documentation to the lender, blah blah blah rescheduling or cancellation for one reason or another. I will more than likely get 3 of those 4 lost jobs back. That is all the work I hate. But I do love my job.


  11. #11
    Jeff Knight's Avatar
    Jeff Knight Guest

    Default Re: New Real Estate Inspector, Las Vegas

    Jeff,
    Being involved in this market for almost 12 years now I have come up with these 5 tips if any inspector asks me how to be successful in the home inspection market...and they are in the order of importance.

    1) Be able to communicate well - If you cannot communicate your findings to the client or communicate with agents in a professional and easily understandable way then it will be tough to be successful...this includes being a good listener.

    2) Know your stuff - This means going to a good school to begin with and to ALWAYS continue with continuing education. If you are lacking in certain areas then make it so you are not.

    3) Have good business sense - This means making good business decisions when it comes to where and when to spend your money and how to handle the bumps that every business goes over.

    4) Be open for change - This is somewhat related to #3 above but if you are not open for change then you should expect your business to be short-lived.

    5) Keep up with technology - Is related to #4 above also. If you are still using a handwritten paper checksheet with carbon copy sheets and you still have a DOS machine at home this means you are not keeping up with technology :-)


    p.s. Do not let Jim L. scare you on the 4 hours every night to create the reports. You do NOT need to spend that much time depending upon how you do the inspection and create your report from that.


  12. #12
    Jeff Roberson's Avatar
    Jeff Roberson Guest

    Default Re: New Real Estate Inspector, Las Vegas

    Sorry Jim, I was being facetious about Danny's sarcasm. I do love golf but I am also very familiar with long work hours and piles of paperwork. I'm used to not having a life and seeing my friends at the local sports book only a couple of times a month. The one thing I am not used to, and promised myself I will work hard at to change, is working my butt off for someone else only to be kicked to the side when times get tough. Hard work, long hours and no life is in my blood.

    I've done close to 20 inspections, under an instructor's supervision, to satisfy my state requirements to obtain my license and I think I have a decent understanding of the time involved and the ups and downs of the industry. Sure, I know I'll deal with a lot more "reality checks" and I realize I'll have bigger head aches then I anticipated, but that's the nature of the beast, right?

    You crack my up, Rick(aka Bad Guy or Messenger of Death) Is being the "bearer of bad news" that damaging to a man's ego?? I hear it's more of a dance. Make sure you report all the necessary and obvious "issues" with a house and don't get hung up on all the little "quick fixes" that seem to just annoy the real estate agent or investor who hired you. Plus, "quick fixes" are not listed on my summary report and are just pointed out during the inspection. I get it, I've dealt with all kinds of professionals and clients in the past who seem to have nothing better to do but make my life difficult. I've come to terms with it. And as much and I despise this cliche, "it is what it is!"

    David, I miss hunting. I lived in Pleasantville, AR(pop. 19,000) for a couple of years as a cattle farmer and loved the country. Hunted mostly small game though, I only had an .22 Winchester. What a blast it was! Now I'm back in the city and the only fire arm I use these days is my Beretta M9, for home protection. Thanks for the best wishes. I think my most difficult challenge, and biggest expense will be marketing. Any suggestions?

    Thanks for all the great advise, Ted. I agree, I want to be able to inspect, report and go. Here in Las Vegas, during this unique period in real estate, most of the homes I'll be inspecting are vacant. Some are going through a "short sale" and others have been listed for months. So far I have seen a decent cross section of what to expect. Here we have mostly track housing outside of downtown Las Vegas that average around 2,400 SF. These houses seem to average 1-3 hours for a thorough inspection. Then there are thousands of vacant mid and high rise condos that were built and never sold because of the suffering real estate market and because of the economy in general. I've met a few guys who are doing condos exclusively and sometimes find themselves spending less than an hour for the inspection. I feel like I'm in a promising market with plenty of opportunity, I'm just waiting for my back ground check to come back so I can finalize my license. Thanks again for the heads up on what to expect from the always changing work schedule.

    Thanks for the "5 tips", Jeff. Good stuff! Do you inspect with a PDA or Pocket PC? I've seen battery operated printers, Hand held computers and several great programs that help stream line the inspection. What's your process?

    Thanks again everyone, great information and insight!

    Jeff


  13. #13
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    rockport texas
    Posts
    132

    Default Re: New Real Estate Inspector, Las Vegas

    Jeff,
    Call me 361.230.2312 I was in the same boat 1 month ago. Lets share ideas. Sorry I'm done with this damm computer today, Just finished two reports & can't bare to look at the screen anymore.


  14. #14
    Jeff Knight's Avatar
    Jeff Knight Guest

    Default Re: New Real Estate Inspector, Las Vegas

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Roberson View Post
    Thanks for the "5 tips", Jeff. Good stuff! Do you inspect with a PDA or Pocket PC? I've seen battery operated printers, Hand held computers and several great programs that help stream line the inspection. What's your process?

    Jeff
    Most of our inspector clients use a PocketPC device but there are a few that use a laptop or tablet device. They use our software as they walk around during the inspection and collect their findings as they go. They can then print right on sight to a portable printer or export it to a Word document with all their findings to avoid the rekeying of data back at the office.


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