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  1. #1
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    Default You'll have to get in line.....

    Well I must be doing something right, I seemed to have raised the ire of yet another Realtor AND Seller (yep, that's two birds with one stone).

    I inspected a house that had piles of boxes and trash stacked in front of the garage door and front porch. Lawn overgrown to only a couple feet and very brown (due to lack of rain and heat wave). Divorce, and people have moved out except for the crap left behind.

    The roof was pretty much shot, but had a few lifted nails, broken shingles and holes. I used orange survey tape to mark the nails and holes (maybe 4 locations).

    Got the call from the Realtor - "Why did I put ALL that orange tape on the roof?" To identify the problem areas to help the repair guy. "My Seller doesn't like the tape on the roof, it might scare off potential buyers". Well, the roof is shot and needs repair NOW. You did know that the plumbing vent flashing is gone and there is a 5" hole in the roof didn't you? "Yes, but we priced the house accordingly".

    OK, I'll come by and remove the tape in the next day or so. He called the next morning and asked why the tape was still there. Then again a couple hours later.

    I finally got over there and removed the four pieces of 2" long orange tape. I hope the house will sell now with the tape gone.

    I expect he will call today and thank me for taking the tape off the house - I'm going to wait by the phone - he should call any minute now..........
    JF

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  2. #2
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    Mar 2007
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    Smile Re: You'll have to get in line.....

    You have to love these real estate agents. Your roof story reminds me of a home with prior hail damage. Supposedly, the roof had been entirely replaced. That was claimed by the seller. The flashing was shot around the chimney, and the entire east wall of the attic was wet (rain the day before) and moldy. My client asked for a new roof. The seller's agent called me to tell me the buyer could not ask for a new roof. My response was that she could ask for what ever she wanted to ask for. She got her new roof.

    Randall Aldering GHI BAOM MSM
    Housesmithe Inspection
    www.housesmithe.com

  3. #3
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    Default Re: You'll have to get in line.....

    Thats funny Jack.

    Maybe you should have used chalk and made big circles around them like some HI's do around here.

    You know your going to get that call from the roofer asking where are those nail heads?

    With the realtor calling you like that is the exact reason I quit trying to identify locations or items for them. Fogged windows no longer get marked because they were calling wanting me to take off the little sticky orange dot or wipe off the black dry erase X I place on the windows. Actually I had to go and wipe off with my finger 3 of the X's once because the agent complained so about them.

    Its a no-win situation.

    Has that phone rang yet, Jack?

    rick


  4. #4
    Richard Rushing's Avatar
    Richard Rushing Guest

    Default Re: You'll have to get in line.....

    I will not go back and remove an 'X' placed on a window by a dry erase marker.

    I do use chalk on the roof that with time weathers off. Under no circumstances will I go back and remove the chalk markings. I tell the buyer that if they want to pay me to come back and verify the issues have been taken care of.... they can. Or, they can take a look for themselves.

    By the way, that orange survey tape would not last long on the roof. Chances are it would be gone the next heavy rain, accompanied by wind.

    rr


  5. #5
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    Default Re: You'll have to get in line.....

    I guess I need to go buy a tub of the brightest sidewalk chalk I can find.

    Yep, phones are back to normal again.

    ON another subject - just got back from a chili cook off. When I saw those little tiny plastic cups for the samples I was wondering how I was going to get my $10 worth. Well, I managed to get to all 28 booths and a couple for a second taste. Had a couple beers, a bottle of water and a frozen hot chocolate to top it off. We may be in the danger zone tonight.

    One of my clients had a booth and I gave him a big bag of jalapenos from my garden. I voted for him because he was the only one there that had paid me (cash money for his inspectioon a week ago)(and his chili was in the my top three). I may have to sit in the balcony at church tomorrow.

    By the way, I also tasted some of the worst chili I have ever had too.

    JF


  6. #6
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    Default Re: You'll have to get in line.....

    See JAck, If you had put the tape where it belongs you would not have had a problem. OVER THE BROKERS MOUTH. Thats why I carry an extra pair of socks. One for the broker and one for the client


  7. #7
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    Default Re: You'll have to get in line.....

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Feldmann View Post
    I may have to sit in the balcony at church tomorrow.
    Be careful, Jack. Wooden church pews can greatly amplify a SBD (silent but deadly).

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

  8. #8
    Richard Rushing's Avatar
    Richard Rushing Guest

    Default Re: You'll have to get in line.....

    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce Breedlove View Post
    Be careful, Jack. Wooden church pews can greatly amplify a SBD (silent but deadly).

    Bruce is right... ask me how I know


  9. #9
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    Default Re: You'll have to get in line.....

    The 11th. commandment..

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  10. #10
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    Default Re: You'll have to get in line.....

    Jack, maybe you could begin marking roof defects with mounds of chili. Ah yes, I can see it now. Jack goes to start his roof inspection and along with his normal array of tools take a few cans of Dinty Moore and a can opener. The buyer naturally is intrigued..........

    Buyer: "Jack, what's with the cans of chili?"

    Jack: "You'll see."


  11. #11
    Chad Fabry's Avatar
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    Default Re: You'll have to get in line.....

    I have a healthy level of respect for everyone in this thread.


    Having said that, it'd piss me off if some home home inspector taped, marked, chalked or chili'd my house.

    I wouldn't dream of marking up someone else's home. I take pictures and mark them up so my client knows where to look for the problem.

    The photos are mine. The house isn't.


  12. #12
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    Default Re: You'll have to get in line.....

    I'll mark a gas leak by tying orange flagging to the pipe but otherwise I don't mark defects. If I am working for the buyer the house does not belong to my client and there is no guarantee he will buy the house (especially after I get through with it). Pics are usually good enough to identify the location of a defect.

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

  13. #13
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    Default Re: You'll have to get in line.....

    There's a termite inspector in my area I run across once in a while during my inspections. By the time he gets done "probing" some termite-damaged ceiling joists in the basement, it looks like somebody set an M-80 off inside the joist. I don't own the home and I'm not crazy about seeing that, regardless of the fact that the wood was damaged by termites to begin with. This guy is so aggressive, his probing of sound joists makes them look like they need repairs when he gets done with things.


  14. #14
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    Default Re: You'll have to get in line.....

    I guess I mark things because I get so many calls from Sellers (or their repair guys) asking WHERE something is. I also get thank you's from the repair guys BECAUSE I mark things (mostly in attics and crawlspaces).

    In the case of roofs, a photo just doesn't work as well (IMO) as a small piece of tape to identify a hole or a nail sticking out. Yes, they should have a competent repair guy up there, and yes they should be able to find ALL the problems without being lead to them. Yes, I tell them I may not have marked ALL the problems.

    I also put little stickers on the outlets I find problems with. Of course, so home owners immediately remove them as soon as they get home. I've also seen other inspectors stickers, so I know I'm not the only guy doing it here in Knoxville.

    On the other hand, I can see why a homeowner would get pissed about having the tape on the roof. Point taken. However, in the case of this s---pile, a few pcs of tape was not the detractor, their truckload of crap in front of the garage door/front porch and high weeds probably kept more than one potential buyer from going in.

    JF


  15. #15
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    Default Re: You'll have to get in line.....

    When I first started, I got calls from contractors asking where the truss problems where - so I started carrying a hammer stapler and stapling orange tape hanging down from the places the contractor needed to look.

    You could poke your head up into the attic access opening and see all the orange tape hanging down.

    I STILL got calls from contractors asking where the problems were, and that they could not see any orange tape hanging down. That was back when I used to do re-inspections, I would go back out (getting paid, of course) and all the orange tape would still be hanging down ... what do you mean WHERE?

    So ... I stopped bothering to mark anything, they would either call or not call, regardless of whether it was marked or not.

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

  16. #16
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    Default Re: You'll have to get in line.....

    I used to use little post-it type dots, but I just take pictures and give a general description of the location in the report now. Now without the report, you will never know I was there.
    No system is perfect, but this one works for me, at least for now.
    I am try to be willing to learn and change.
    Jim

    Jim Luttrall
    www.MrInspector.net
    Dallas, Texas

  17. #17
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    Default Re: You'll have to get in line.....

    I use a dry erase marker. Most of the windows I mark are so filthy, you can barely see if they are fogged and I was tired of people calling me wanting to know which windows were fogged or damaged. Window locations can be hard to show in pics as well. If they let the windows get that dirty, they have no business getting mad about my little blue x. I think I would tell them to wipe it off themselves if they did not like it. Same with outlets.

    I think people that get upset with these things are rare and probably the type that would not have many defects to mark anyway as they are meticulous in the upkeep of their homes. Or on the flip side, someone that is miffed about your findings and wanting to give you a hard time. Have not ever had anyone complain about marking, but have had countless calls wanting to know where something was before I started marking them. It is not unusual to have 5 to 10 windows or outlets that are in need of repair and I do not want to try and describe every one of them and include that many pics in my report.

    If it weren't for lawyers, we would never need them.

  18. #18
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    Default Re: You'll have to get in line.....

    I don't mark roofs on inspections for real estate transactions. I try not to leave any sign that I was there at all since the deal may fall through and I hate it when the seller calls to complain because I dropped attic insulation in the hallway, didn't put a box back in the same exact location in the garage, or what-not.

    That being said, when I do a newly built home inspection or end-of builder warranty inspection, I will use chalk on the roof to identify the nails, etc as the house is either already owned by the client or the chance of them backing out on a new home is pretty slim, plus, even if they back out, the builder usually doesn't mind if I mark spots for his punch list (providing the punch list for the builder is a whole other topic ). I mark these roofs on the new homes because I was tired of doing follow up inspections and finding none of the nails sealed etc, even with good photos and descriptions of locations. But, for that matter, on many follow up inspections on the new or 1 year old houses, I usually find that many of the repair items were never completed, even though the builder said they were and even had a color photo guide (my report) to find the issues.

    That's my take,

    Eric


  19. #19

    Default Re: You'll have to get in line.....

    I don't mark either. I will try to describe the location but also include verbiage about such as.... and there may be others not seen. The language always says the specialist should inspect the whole area or system since what I'm doing as a "generalist" will not catch everything.
    I've had owners have the contractor in for repairs and insist on only doing what I actually called out and ignoring everything else.
    The other side is the contractors get greedy and try to "sell" more than is needed.
    Dana


  20. #20
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    Default Re: You'll have to get in line.....

    Quote Originally Posted by Chad Fabry View Post
    I wouldn't dream of marking up someone else's home. I take pictures and mark them up so my client knows where to look for the problem.

    The photos are mine. The house isn't.
    Thanks for the vote of confidence, for a while there I thought... Is it my fate to always be wrong around this crew.


  21. #21
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    Default Re: You'll have to get in line.....

    Joe,

    Don't be so hard on yourself.

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  22. #22
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    Default Re: You'll have to get in line.....

    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Hurst View Post
    Joe,

    Don't be so hard on yourself.

    Don't lose any sleep over me, I take all information gleaned here with a grain of salt, mostly I have found myself on the right side of the ledger whenever I took the opposite position of the InspectionNews We-Know-It-All (WKIA) clan. Batting 1,000 and swinging for the stars.


  23. #23
    Kevin Barre's Avatar
    Kevin Barre Guest

    Default Re: You'll have to get in line.....

    Quote Originally Posted by Chad Fabry View Post
    I have a healthy level of respect for everyone in this thread.


    Having said that, it'd piss me off if some home home inspector taped, marked, chalked or chili'd my house.

    I wouldn't dream of marking up someone else's home. I take pictures and mark them up so my client knows where to look for the problem.

    The photos are mine. The house isn't.
    I have to vote with Chad here. While I can understand the value of an identifying mark, in the real world I realize that I am the "enemy" in the eyes of many sellers. And it is still their home.The last thing I would do is give them a reason to call me and gripe. I look at my visit there as being that of a somewhat-less-than-welcomed guest and try to leave things as I found them. I do leave them a note if there's a safety issue I think they should know about immediately.


    Jack--
    Next time draw a chalk outline of a body on the roof. That'll teach 'em.


  24. #24
    Join Date
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    Rockwall Texas
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    Default Re: You'll have to get in line.....

    I just renewed my PCO insurance this last month.

    Last week I get a call from the underwriter's who want to ask some questions about business practices and income earned.

    One of the things they asked me was when I inspected a crawlspace or an attic did I make an type of identification markings in those areas that would identify that I had been there. Actually they suggested that you take a black marker and write you Co. Name and date somewhere in the attic or crawl to have as a way of proving you where in there.

    I've always used a marker or a piece of chalk and marked my name, co. name and the date somewhere so I could prove I inspected those areas.

    Actually what is weird is when you walk through an attic several years latter and look up and see your own name and then you realize that you don't even remember the place.

    Rick


  25. #25
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    Default Re: You'll have to get in line.....

    I will sometimes leave my business card (with the date written on it) in the far reaches of an attic or crawlspace.


  26. #26
    Michael Greenwalt's Avatar
    Michael Greenwalt Guest

    Default Re: You'll have to get in line.....

    My pictures tell the story of my visit to either the crawl space or the attic, they may remove the card or wipe the mark, but explain how I got BACK in your attic to take these photos!

    Works for me


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