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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Knoxville, TN
    Posts
    2,446

    Default Why can't I just smack them?????

    Got an email form a past client expressing her dissatisfaction with my service. She had several contractors out and ALL of them said "your inspector should have caught this".
    Her complaints: plumbing problems that turned out to also include septic issues, fireplace and chimney problems, and basement moisture and mold problems.

    I pulled up the report and on page 2 was the observation about moisture in the basement along with a couple photos. No mold visible, just moisture stains and standing water. There was also a few notes about defects in the fireplaces (with photos) as well as damper issues, etc. Finally there were the notes and photos about numerous plumbing issues and they needed to have a licensed plumber come out and fix the stuff.

    My contract, as well as a TN Real Estate Form says the home inspectors do not check septic systems. There was also no smell noticed during the inspection by me or them, and not during their walk thru I'm guessing.

    Just venting. Idiot contractors that want to throw inspectors under the bus when they have no idea what the inspector saw, or what they wrote in a report. AND, clients that don't bother to read any or all of the report.

    Thanks for listening!!!

    Inspection Referral

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Spring City/Surrounding Philadelphia area
    Posts
    3,473

    Default Re: Why can't I just smack them?????

    I hear you Jack. I had a client from an inspection in late summer call me and say I missed some knob and tube wiring in the basement. The attic had a bunch of it (all live) which I called out and reported but the basement was small and I remember scouring the hell out of it and not seeing any K&T. The client said his handyman saw it and pointed it out and said "your inspector should have caught this". The client seemed agitated when he called me and said something to the effect of "what am I supposed to do about this blah blah blah". I asked him some questions like where this alleged K&T was, what it looked like, and if it was two round cloth insulated lines side-by-side. Based on his answers, I was 99.9% sure his handyman misidentified 1st generation romex with cloth sheathing as K&T. I asked him to take pics of the wiring and e-mail it to me. He said he would........I have received nothing.

    A few years back, I received a call from a friend of ours (husband of a woman my wife teaches with) who I did two inspections for. The 1st house was a DIY mess and the 2nd one was better but still had its share of DIY crap. One item in particular in the 2nd house was a split bus panel that needed 10 throws of the hand to deenergize. We talked about it for about 10 minutes during the inspection and I documented it in the report as the panel needing replacement. After settlement, our friend had an electrician in to correct some bad DIY wiring above an area of drop ceiling and the electrician said "your panel is illegal....too many throws of the hand......your home inspector should have caught this.......they have insurance to pay for stuff they miss like this". Said friend laid all this out and asked me if I had insurance. While we were on the phone and he was talking, I pulled up the report and read aloud for him verbatim where I documented the very condition he was asking me to pay for. In this case, I wanted to smack our friend first, smack him again, and then smack the electrician.......and then smack the friend one more time for good measure.

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

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Ormond Beach, Florida
    Posts
    26,251

    Default Re: Why can't I just smack them?????

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Feldmann View Post
    Got an email form a past client expressing her dissatisfaction with my service. She had several contractors out and ALL of them said "your inspector should have caught this".
    Here is a thought for the future:

    At each section in your report, get the first lick in and smack them ... for each item make a statement that you can't believe THEY DID THIS, THEY KNEW BETTER, and THEY SHOULD HAVE CAUGHT THIS AND CORRECTED IT OR NOT DONE IT.

    When contractors start calling you about it simply smile and say: "Well, that's what you contractors have been saying about inspectors, turn about is only fair play." ... hesitate a few moments to let it sink in ... then offer "Tell you what, how about if you get all the contractors together and I get all the inspectors together and we have a meeting to resolve this issue. If you contractors want to keep saying the inspector should have caught this, we will keep saying that the contractor should not have caused this."

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

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Lake Barrington, IL
    Posts
    1,363

    Default Re: Why can't I just smack them?????

    Most people have a tendency to want to throw someone under the bus when they feel as though they've been slighted or they feel there's an opportunity to look superior. There's also the problem of people simply not taking some time to read their reports.

    I take care when I comment on someone else's work, even if it's blatantly wrong. I know the sting of being slammed, whether it's deserved or not. My preference is to cut someone else a little slack and reserve harsh criticism - whether it's deserved or not. I'll admit that the desire to slam someone can sometimes be pretty intense.

    Eric Barker, ACI
    Lake Barrington, IL

  5. #5
    Ted Menelly's Avatar
    Ted Menelly Guest

    Default Re: Why can't I just smack them?????

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Feldmann View Post
    Got an email form a past client expressing her dissatisfaction with my service. She had several contractors out and ALL of them said "your inspector should have caught this".
    Her complaints: plumbing problems that turned out to also include septic issues, fireplace and chimney problems, and basement moisture and mold problems.

    I pulled up the report and on page 2 was the observation about moisture in the basement along with a couple photos. No mold visible, just moisture stains and standing water. There was also a few notes about defects in the fireplaces (with photos) as well as damper issues, etc. Finally there were the notes and photos about numerous plumbing issues and they needed to have a licensed plumber come out and fix the stuff.

    My contract, as well as a TN Real Estate Form says the home inspectors do not check septic systems. There was also no smell noticed during the inspection by me or them, and not during their walk thru I'm guessing.

    Just venting. Idiot contractors that want to throw inspectors under the bus when they have no idea what the inspector saw, or what they wrote in a report. AND, clients that don't bother to read any or all of the report.

    Thanks for listening!!!
    Its the American way. Pay up you cheap business man type. You just gotta have a heart. I had a man come on to me over the phone and I had to stop him and ask who he was and the address. He obviously had no idea I was in front of my computer and was bringing his report up. He named 20 items at the least and never took a breath. These items is what the new inspector found because he was trying to bail out of the home a year after I inspected it. I read back every single complaint this guy had. He said that's right, I am surprised you could write all that down. I told him it was what I was reading........from my report a year ago.

    But I should have had a heart and bought his home from him. I still have a bad review on me from years ago and it will not go away.


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Memphis TN.
    Posts
    4,311

    Default Re: Why can't I just smack them?????

    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Menelly View Post
    I still have a bad review on me from years ago and it will not go away.
    Don't Get Me Started on Ya !

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    It Might have Choked Artie But it ain't gone'a choke Stymie! Our Gang " The Pooch " (1932)
    Billy J. Stephens HI Service Memphis TN.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Bennett (Denver metro), Colorado
    Posts
    1,394

    Default Re: Why can't I just smack them?????

    We've all been there and done that. In another thread I described a recent complaint that I had with a missed gas leak that I hadn't missed at all.

    A few years ago, I got a call about an inspection that I had done a few years earlier. The exasperated lady explained that her electrician said that the wiring in the kitchen was a disaster and he wasn't sure where to begin to fix it and her inspector (that would be me) should have caught it. I pulled out the report and sure enough, plain as day, I said the kitchen outlets were incorrectly wired. She exclaims, "you didn't say it was a disaster!"

    Now the rest of the story is that I told her that house wiring was not rocket science and call up my electrician for a second opinion. She called me the next day thanking me. She had told her electrician what I had said and he suddenly figured out how he could fix the kitchen and it wouldn't be difficult or cost much at all.

    What a shmuck that guy must be, but hey, I was out of it at that point.


  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Chicago IL
    Posts
    1,984

    Default Re: Why can't I just smack them?????

    I don't usually have problems with clients asking stupid questions. I take it as the norm that they will so it doesn't bother me too much. Some of the questions are pretty amazing though. As others have mentioned clearly some people just don't read the report.
    I have more issues is idiot contractors who can't do compliant or safe work no matter what.
    Went for my 2nd re-inspection to a house yesterday; so 3 times total so far. Mr. idiot contractor still can't get it right or has a clue. Does the usual Ok, ok, I fix routine and then does squat or makes it worse.
    He finally provided the Plans and Permit yesterday. Imagine, the plans don't match up to the as built in oh so many ways. At one point I can't help but let me know that I think he's an idiot and has no business being a project manager.
    His response: I don't understand problem, you are the problem Mr. Inspector, we have these 5 other houses just like this one, all inspected by other inspectors, no one else give us problem like you, you are the problem not the house, other inspectors say houses are fine.
    Obviously I couldn't help but laugh. I'm so sick of these 'monkey see, monkey do' contractors. I have to deal with them all the time. They either have no brain of their own or aren't willing to use it. They can install something just the way its been shown to them and that's it. If the 1st guy showed it wrong, they continue that routine without ever thinking about it. Throw in a variable that changes conditions or a compliance standard and they don't know what to do.
    It's just so pathetic.

    www.aic-chicago.com
    773/844-4AIC
    "The Code is not a ceiling to reach but a floor to work up from"

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Bennett (Denver metro), Colorado
    Posts
    1,394

    Default Re: Why can't I just smack them?????

    Your comments remind me that a couple of years ago, a private home builder, told me that a HI is just a guy who isn't good enough to be a contractor or builder.


  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    so so, California
    Posts
    1,769

    Default Re: Why can't I just smack them?????

    Quote Originally Posted by Lon Henderson View Post
    Your comments remind me that a couple of years ago, a private home builder, told me that a HI is just a guy who isn't good enough to be a contractor or builder.
    he missed it, he missed it,he missed it, he missed it, he missed it, he missed it,he missed it, he missed it... Most of the contractors dont understand that you are limited as to what you can see...and do.
    Ther're trying to earn points to get some work...

    The MAZZA INSPECTION GROUP
    www.mazzainspections.com
    Level III Thermo-picture-taker-er...er

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Snowbird (this means I'm retired and migrate between locations), FL/MI
    Posts
    4,086

    Default Re: Why can't I just smack them?????

    An oft recurring quip J. Gleason repeated in "The Honeymooners"..."To the Moon Alice, To the Moon!". (Mental image, virtual smack...grin/enjoy .Late Nite foraging. Couldn't find any Jalepeno Pesto & Alfredo sauced pasta in the refrigerator, had to settle for a stuffing & turkey sandwich.Hope you had a pleasant Thanksgiving.


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