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Thread: Scheduling....

  1. #1
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    Default Scheduling....

    I really shouldn't complain since the phone has actually been ringing pretty nicely the last couple weeks..... BUT, all the re-scheduling and cancellations are just out of control.

    I run the phones for a 3 man company (while doing inspections) and some days I get home and look at my schedule/notepad and it looks like a road map. Of course, ultimately, it's not our clients' fault, it's the banks. But it really is crazy. This, on top of all the crappy forclosures, and having to compete on price, and I've never felt so frazzled and underpaid.

    So, are you guys noticing the same? Or, have I just had a bad couple weeks?

    In the old days the phone rang (often) and I wrote down a time and an address... now, it's like every inspection takes 3 phone calls... only to have it moved to another day, we show up, the utilities are off (after being promised they are on) and the buyer realizes the place is a dump and doesn't want to buy it anyway.

    No exaggeration, I think I have 6 jobs that were once scheduled and are now "waiting" for some ay-hole in a bank to make a decision.

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  2. #2
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    Default Re: Scheduling....

    I don't reschedule if utilities are off when we get to the house. I ask the client to ensure with their realtor that everything is on when booking the inspection. If utilities are off, it stinks for the buyer but I'm at the house and there are still plenty of other things to be inspected. Whether the buyer or their realtor or the seller picks up the tab for my return trip doesn't matter to me.

    Yours is a nice problem to have right now Matt because you're busy. But you're right. All that shuffling and resceduling and repeated phone calls can be a mighty PITA. Sometimes, you just want to say " don't call me again until everything is sorted out and ready to go".

    "It takes a big man to cry. It takes an even bigger man to laugh at that man". - Jack Handey

  3. #3

    Default Re: Scheduling....

    I've had the same problem with every bank owned home. This week, I had 2 reschedule on me. One of those is rescheduling for the 3rd time. The banks say the utilities will be on by a set date, then the day before the buyer finds out they won't be on. I think they do this to deter people from getting an inspection. The one I finally did yesterday was finally pushed to the final day (day 15) of their inspection clause.

    I started charging $75 for a cancellation within 24 hours and if I show up at the home, the inspection will take place. Utilities or not. If they get the utilities on at a later date, I can come back out for a re-inspect and charge by the hour. This is all outlined in an e-mail confirmation I send out to all my client at the time of booking.

    There is still nothing I can do when they cancel 2 days before


  4. #4
    Ted Menelly's Avatar
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    Default Re: Scheduling....

    Just cannot charge folks for it right now

    Today....2 inspections, no paper work yet but I was suppose to be there and scheduled. Tomorrow morning, the box has been pulled off the home so the selling agent on the foreclosure has to get permission from the bank to get an electrician for repairs so they can turn the power on.

    One I have been waiting on and actually scheduled once moved to more than likely next Tues. One I am waiting on needs to buyers of their home to accept the offer on the home they are selling so I can do an inspection on my clients future home. One I have been waiting for moved to Monday am.

    There is actually at least 2 if not three more in the works. Dead week this week that I started with three from last week I already had set up. The two for today were new callers. I did one for a buyer from Florida on Tuesday morning.

    After all that. In short the past two weeks have been scheduling nightmares and has left me sitting for the week. Next week if things go well I could possibly already have about 8 inspections.....yeah, right, I am not banking on it.


  5. #5
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    Default Re: Scheduling....

    Quote Originally Posted by Matt Fellman View Post
    I really shouldn't complain since the phone has actually been ringing pretty nicely the last couple weeks..... BUT, all the re-scheduling and cancellations are just out of control.
    Matt, I have 3 words for you, Americas call Center.


  6. #6
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    Default Re: Scheduling....

    My girl does not schedule or hold any days anything unless they have signed and returned acceptance from the asset manager and, all utilities are on. Otherwise, it's $100 for a re inspection. The next obstacle is matching some yahoo's discounted price and doing it within their 5 days which started two days ago...

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  7. #7
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    Default Re: Scheduling....

    Quote Originally Posted by Benjamin Thompson View Post
    Matt, I have 3 words for you, Americas call Center.
    Yeah.... I looked into one of these things a couple years ago. For the volume we were doing it was $35,000 a year. That seemed like a bit much.

    Maybe I'll look into it again. Comparing the volume I was doing then and now it should be about $500 a year

    What's the ballpark cost per inspection that you pay? Or, a yearly/monthly fee?


  8. #8

    Default Re: Scheduling....

    Knock on schedule book here, but........

    I haven't had much of a problem with re- schedules or utility issues for some reason? Your company does a larger volume of inspections, which I'm sure is a good part of it.

    I double and trip check on utilities prior to the inspection which has helped substantially.

    NOTE: I'm tempted to erase this post instead of posting it out of fear that your scheduling issues will rub off on me.


  9. #9
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    Default Re: Scheduling....

    I'm averaging one reschedule each week. I just bump them back a few days and open up their inspection slot.

    When they call to schedule the inspection we'll ask if it's a foreclosure and let them know that it generally takes a minimum of 3 business days to get the water turned on.

    If the water is off at the inspection I charge them for the full inspection and disclaim all of the plumbing. If they want me to come back it's $125. Generally, they end up checking the plumbing themselves later.

    We took a call this morning. They wanted an inspection this afternoon. Wanted us to arrange it with the agents and get the water and electric on for the inspection. I was already booked so we told them we weren't interested. Some people don't have a clue.

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  10. #10
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    Default Re: Scheduling....

    Quote Originally Posted by Matt Fellman View Post
    Yeah.... I looked into one of these things a couple years ago. For the volume we were doing it was $35,000 a year. That seemed like a bit much.

    Maybe I'll look into it again. Comparing the volume I was doing then and now it should be about $500 a year

    What's the ballpark cost per inspection that you pay? Or, a yearly/monthly fee?
    I think it is $295 per month plus about $17 per booking. It is usually about $700 per month for me (by myself). If you have 3 inspectors, it seems like it might be a good idea to hire a receptionist, maybe an out of work Realtor?


  11. #11
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    Default Re: Scheduling....

    Yeah.... that's about what I remember. It is much less do the much less volume but still over $1,000 a month. Hiring someone to answer to phone would be nice. We use to have a girl.... but then you need a place for them to sit (office $$$).... and, if they work enough, there's health insurance $$$. Next thing you know, you're paying $2500 for someone to sit and watch a phone ring intermittently.

    The call center thing does sound nice.... just expensive.


  12. #12
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    Default Re: Scheduling....

    It is pretty pricey, but for me much preferable to hiring somebody. Honestly, it is well worth it it the time it returns. I very rarely have to talk to a client or agent prior to the inspection. They up-sell services which I am not comfortable doing. They don't listen to pleas for discounts. Essentially, the service pays for itself (for me anyway). They often get me an infrared add-on at $100-$200.

    Sometimes I see on the scheduling sheet where they have rescheduled the same appointment 3 or 4 times, basically for $17. I have had very, very few complaints about their service from agents.

    They have much longer hours than I want to answer the phone and are answering the phone on Saturdays.

    Give them a try, there is no contract or obligation, you can quit any time.
    I don't have any "dog in this race", no kick backs, nothing to do with the business, It has just made my business soooo much easier. I would quit before I went back to doing all that crap myself, I didn't realize how much I hated that part of HI.


  13. #13
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    Default Re: Scheduling....

    A woman who ran a call handling business came to one of our chapter meetings. She was very nice and laid out what you would pay. She charged per inspection scheduled and up to 15 or so inspections, it was something like $35 per inspection and then the rate dropped down the more that got booked. But I recall doing the math and a 25 inspection moth clocked in at $850.00.
    I'll handle my own calls thank you. That's close to 3 inspection fees lopped right off the top.

    "It takes a big man to cry. It takes an even bigger man to laugh at that man". - Jack Handey

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Scheduling....

    Quote Originally Posted by Benjamin Thompson View Post

    They don't listen to pleas for discounts.

    They have much longer hours than I want to answer the phone and are answering the phone on Saturdays.
    These are appealing, for sure....

    One thing worry about is a call center being able to factor things like age/size of house and distance between jobs to maximize my schedule. I try to squeeze two a day when I can but HATE having a huge gap where I end up killing time that I could be at home. Honestly, I don't even know if there is a person alive that could run my schedule the way I like

    I suppose there's some give and take.....


  15. #15
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    Default Re: Scheduling....

    Quote Originally Posted by Matt Fellman View Post
    These are appealing, for sure....

    One thing worry about is a call center being able to factor things like age/size of house and distance between jobs to maximize my schedule. I try to squeeze two a day when I can but HATE having a huge gap where I end up killing time that I could be at home. Honestly, I don't even know if there is a person alive that could run my schedule the way I like

    I suppose there's some give and take.....
    I was concerned about that too, it's hard to let go of. I had to give them some hard and fast rules like over 3000 sf, I need all day. They follow the rules I set up and call me if there is a question or something iffy.
    "dog in this race" ? Where did I get that? I haven't been to a Greyhound race for 30 years.


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