A-1 Real Estate Inspections

A-1 Real Estate Inspections

Performing inspections on residential and commercial properties for the Costal Bend Area. A Professional Inspector #20523

Providing inspections for residential and commercial properties. Licensed by the Texas Real Estate Commission (TREC) as a Professional Inspector #20523.

[02/12/18]   Inspections a major cause of deals busting? Studies say no

A National Association of Realtors survey revealed, “only 64 percent of purchase contracts settled on time, 29% experienced delays and 7% fell apart.”Of the 7% that do not close, what gets in the way?

• 39% Financing issues
• 16% Appraisal disagreements
• 11% Title and deed problems
• 9% Inspections (so 9% of the 7%–or about 6/10 of a percent–that do not close are due to inspections)
• 8% Contingencies in the contract
• The remainder – buyer or seller cold feet, HOA’s creating obstacles, buyers losing jobs.

Inspectors are often feared as “deal-killers”. Very few sales fail as a result of inspections. A deal that failed because of negative inspection findings is probably a positive for the seller, buyer, and real estate agent. Finding problems before a lot of money changes hands most likely prevents losses, future lawsuits, and hits to an agent’s reputation.“The best defense is a good offense.” A tough pre-listing (or seller’s) inspection will prevent the “surprise” negative inspection coming after all the parties have contracted. The seller can use the information to make repairs the seller wants to make and be prepared to discuss/negotiate the remaining. Listen to an expert. Gary Keller of Keller-Williams advises to always get a seller’s inspection.

Commercial and residential property purchases are major commitments. Failure to secure the most thorough professional property inspection available is a failure to demand the due diligence we would normally exercise when purchasing a used car, selecting a physician, or considering an investment advisor. Barry Sone, whose syndicated column “House Detective” runs in the Oklahoman, says that the Home Inspector Brampton you want to hire is known by the following phrases: “too picky,” “deal killer,” “takes too long,” “nitpicks everything.”

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WHAT NEW HOMEOWNERS SHOULD KNOW ABOUT THE ROOF

linkedin.com Roofing and roofing materials is not well understood by most homeowners. This article will be very helpful to the average person who is looking to

American Home Inspectors Training

As off-the-wall as that sounds to anyone who’s received the standard education in home buying — always, always get a home inspection! — area real estate agents say that, more and more, the old rules are being thrown by the wayside.

[08/22/16]   Buying a home isn't like buying a toaster. If you discover something's wrong with your new home, you can't return it for a refund or an even exchange. Purchasing a home is an important investment and should be treated as such. Therefore, before finalizing anything, your ideal home needs an inspection to protect you from throwing your hard-earned money into a potential money pit.

What Is A Home Inspection?

A home inspection is a professional examination of a home's roof, plumbing, heating and cooling system, electrical systems, and foundation. Because the average cost of a home inspection runs around $316, but can help you avoid expensive issues like faulty wiring or a leaky roof, getting one ultimately will help you save money.

There are two types of home of inspections. There's a general home inspection and a specialized inspection.

If the inspector recommends a specialized inspection, take that advice because you want extra assurance that you're making a wise investment. The cost of the specialized inspection varies from type to type.

What A Home Inspection Can Find

Roofing problems are one of the most common issues found by home inspections. Roof repair can range between $316 and $1046, but to replace a roof entirely can cost between $4,660 and $8,950.

Don't underestimate the plumbing. Small leaks can cause damage that costs between $1,041 and $3,488 to repair. Have a specialist check out the sewer system because you don't want to fork out thousands of dollars for repairs the first year you own your home.

Ensuring the home's heating and cooling system is working properly is very important. You don't want to throw down $3,919 to replace an aged furnace. Nor do you want to spend $5,238 replacing an ill-working air conditioner. Replacing and repairing a water heater gets pricey too.

The foundation is so important that if the general inspection report shows foundation problems, lenders will not lend money on the home until those issues are solved. Foundation repairs can reach as high as $5,880 to repair them or more.

How Much Money Can a Home Inspection Save You?

A home inspection helps to find potential expenses beyond the sales price, which puts home buyers in a powerful position for negotiation. If there are any issues discovered during the home inspection, buyers can stipulate that the sellers either repair them before closing or help cover the costs in some other way. If the sellers do not want to front the money to complete the repairs, buyers could negotiate a drop in the overall sales price of the home!

Perhaps even more importantly, a home inspection buys you peace of mind. Your first days and months in a new home will set the tone for your life there, and you don’t want to taint that time with worries about hidden problems and potential money pits.

Work With a Professional Realtor

Are you in the home buying process? I'm here to help you save money, not throw it away.

Don’t Get Burned – Get a Home Inspection to Save Money on Your Next Purchase

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Buying a home and reading the inspection report can be daunting. Never hesitate to ask if you have a question, our goal is to give you an informed decision on your purchase.

[03/08/16]   Home Inspector or Specialist?

Buyers may wonder why they should pay for a home inspection when they can get specialists to point out trouble spots for free. As a real estate professional, your duty is to educate.

February 2016 | By Shannon Ensor






Recently, I noticed a post from a first-time home buyer in a Facebook group I’m a part of. The buyer’s husband wanted to hire a licensed roofer, plumber, and electrician instead of an inspector. She was clearly torn: “He feels that since they are specialists, they will find things in areas that are most important to us and could be costly. Our [agent] has 12 years of experience, is super knowledgeable, and is recommending the inspection.”

It might seem like a simple question to answer, but in order to serve your clients fully, you must first understand the why behind it.

Perhaps the buyer has sticker shock on discovering the cost of hiring an inspector. Here in Texas, inspectors typically charge anywhere from $295 to $495 for a standard home inspection — pool and termite inspections are additional. And remember, they haven’t even bought the home yet, and might feel reluctant to plunk down any cash before closing. On the other hand, many specialists provide a free initial appointment to determine the scope of work the home might need. For buyers on a budget, the specialist route will seem appealing and, as their real estate professional, you need to alert them to the dangers of using “free” work.

Make sure your buyers understand that inspectors are unbiased, licensed professionals. Their scope of work should cover the entire home, and is not based on receiving a future profit from repair work. The specialists are a biased party and no matter how honest they are, they have a vested interest in the home requiring repairs — the more, the better.

Of course, your buyers may think, “A specialist sounds great! I want someone to tear apart the home in a report so the sellers will either have to give me a huge repair allowance or hand over a like-new home! I’m going to skip the costly inspector and go straight to the specialists!”

Ask them how many times they’ve had repair work done to their home, or have known someone who has, and were unhappy with the how the repairs turned out. Ever had more issues as a result of repair work being done? The specialist’s goal is get your business. This could mean they want to sell you on an upgraded system when the current one is sufficient. If your buyers want to upgrade the home later, great! But remind them that the purpose of an inspection is not to see how much they can spend on a home. They need to learn if there are any deficiencies in the home so they can feel more confident in their purchase.

Help your buyers understand that the few hundred dollars they’ll spend on an inspection is one of the most important investments in their new home. Even if the inspection reveals issues with the home that cause your buyers to walk away from the purchase, they should see the money spent as a wise investment that saved them from buying a money pit. Only the paid-for, unbiased opinion will result in the buyers accurately learning about the home.

REALTOR® Magazine’s Answer Book features two customizable handouts for buyers on the inspection process: “What to Know About the Home Inspection” and “Questions to Ask a Home Inspector.”

Another reason behind buyers wanting to go the specialist route is that they may not understand the scope of an inspector’s work. A specialist who works specifically with HVAC systems day in and day out may seem like the more knowledgeable source to your buyers. But they need to realize that a home is a system, and all the parts need to be examined to understand if they’re working together properly.

Educate your buyers with resources about the licensing requirements of inspectors. Ask your favorite inspector for a write-up about his or her duties when inspecting a home so your buyers can feel more confident with the inspector’s work. Educate them on the process: First they hire an inspector to do a full examination of the home; then they bring in the specialists to confirm the report and provide quotes on what it will cost to perform repairs.

More importantly, remind your buyers that inspectors and specialists alike are simply human beings and not one is exempt from mistakes. Inspector A may find something that Inspector B missed, and Inspector B may write up something that Inspector A did not think was a structural issue. They are human and all humans have different ways of looking at things and analyzing them.

You will also need to remind your buyers, especially first-time home buyers, that regardless of the inspection, homes will break. There will be quirks that only reveal themselves after living in the home for a few months. Prepare them so they are not shocked when something that passed inspection breaks after closing. As their real estate professional, you may need to be their “reality check.”

Do you see a theme in this post? Educate, educate, educate. The more you educate your buyers about the inspection process, the better they will feel about the entire purchase. The better they feel, the more referrals they will send you!

One last note about inspectors and specialists: Remember the “rule of three.” Always give your buyers a list of at least three inspectors — and when they ask for specialists, give them at least three for each field. If you only send your buyers to your preferred inspector, when he or she misses something wrong with the home (as they all eventually do — they’re only human), you’ll be added to the blame list because you gave the recommendation. Give three referrals and leave out your bias so that your buyers can come to their decision on who to use on their own based on their own research.

[10/21/15]   Home inspectors are trained professionals groomed to perform a highly technical assessment of your home, but ultimately they are only human.

So how can a home buyer protect themselves from a bad home inspection? "Simple, says inspector. Avoid a bad home inspector."

"Employ your own good judgement and common sense while also looking for these 7 things when choosing your home inspector:"

1. First and foremost, try to get a referral from someone you trust. There’s nothing like hearing firsthand experience from a past client. Then make sure:

2. The inspector is a full-time professional.

3. The inspector belongs to a professional organization like ASHI™, NAHI®, or Inter NACHI®.

4. You understand what is included in the inspection.

5. The inspector carries Errors & Omissions and General Liability insurance (to protect you and the inspector if they miss something).

6. They have plenty of good, strong, legitimate customer reviews.

7. You get along with them.

And one last thing. Stay away from the cheap home inspector.

Just like everything in life you get what you pay for and it’s a common misconception that all home inspectors are created equal. This is a whopper.

Good home inspectors are not cheap and cheap home inspectors are not good.

Follow this advice from a seasoned home inspector, he can guarantee you the absolute best home inspection possible.

[09/13/15]   Dear Real Estate Brokers & Agents:

How many of you have either said or heard someone else in your office say that “the home inspector killed this deal”? If you are being honest, I suspect all of you have and even if you haven’t said it out loud, I’m willing to bet you thought it at least once or twice. Is this really true? Can home inspectors “kill” deals? The honest answer to this questions is “no”. Home inspectors do not kill deals and if the real estate industry really understood what a home inspection is and what home inspectors do, the opposite may be true. Yes, you read this correctly. I really believe a good home inspection is just as likely to help a deal close smoothly as it is to kill a deal.

Right now, I can almost hear some of you say “there is no way a home inspection ever helped close any of my deals”, but let’s step back and examine that statement from a different perspective. First, can you clearly explain the home inspection process and applicable standards of practice in your state to someone in just 3 or 4 sentences? If not, how can you hope to explain it to your client and how can you hope to use the inspection report to protect both your client and perhaps more importantly, you. A well written home inspection report can actually protect a real estate broker or agent from liability exposure whether you are on the buy or sell side of the transaction.

If you represent the buyer, you already know that a good home inspection can often save you from letting a client buy a home with potentially costly hidden defects. If you primarily represent sellers, you might now find yourself asking, “How can a home inspection protect me if I am the listing agent”? The simplest answer is to remember all of the times a seller “innocently” failed to disclose what a buyer might view as a material issue. Or just think about how many times you see a freshly painted basement in a house you are listing for sale. Why would a seller paint a basement floor before you even sign the listing agreement? The point is that real estate agents and brokers are not mind readers and do not have x-ray vision. Having a home inspection report helps alleviate your potential exposure to a post-closing claim which is much appreciated by your E&O carrier. You certainly know what it is like to get dragged into a “he said, she said” argument between a seller and buyer months after the sale closed.

In order to better understand a home inspection just think of the home inspector as a physician with a general practice (GP). When you go see your GP and he/she sees something that is not normal, they typically send you for more tests and refer you to a specialist/expert. They do not try to diagnose everything themselves. Rather, they understand their own limitations and defer to an expert in the field. This is almost identical to what a home inspector (the GP) does when they say in their report that the roof shows evidence of unusual wear and tear and they recommend you contact a licensed roofer (the expert) to further evaluate the issue…before the sale closes. The timing of going to the expert for further evaluation is critical. If you wait until after the closing, the expert may reveal a much more serious problem than you believed. This is akin to ignoring the referral to a specialist by your GP because you have a vacation planned and then finding out after the vacation it is too late to treat your condition.

It is also important to remember home inspection is defined as a “visual examination” of the major components and systems in a home. The word “visual” is very important because it means the inspector cannot see behind/through walls or under carpet/tile and cannot cut holes in anything to supplement his/her visual examination. Other issues encountered by a home inspector which limit the effectiveness of his/her report include, by way of example, inaccessible areas (attics and crawl spaces), rooms filled with boxes, furniture blocking walls, and freshly painted walls, floors, or ceilings. In the end, this means even the best home inspector cannot and should not be expected to find every single item which may be of concern.

Similarly, like a medical exam, the inspector is limited to reporting what they saw on the day of the inspection. The day after the inspection takes place something could happen which creates visual clues not present on the day of the inspection. For example, it hasn’t rained in some parts of California for more than 2 years. If a home inspection is conducted today there may be no visual signs the roof is not sound, but tomorrow after it rains hard everything could change. This is why a walk-through immediately prior to closing is an absolute necessity. Things change after the inspection has been done and not even the best home inspector can predict the future. In addition, once a buyer takes possession it is their duty to properly maintain the home. Too many times we have seen a homeowner try to blame a home inspector for an issue caused solely by the homeowner’s failure to do any regular, required maintenance.

So, how can a home inspection make the closing process go more smoothly? First, if a home inspector is engaged by the seller before the property is listed, the seller will have a road map to use to evaluate and possibly resolve any issues a potential buyer might bring up. If the seller already knows about something, the chances the buyer can use it to derail a sale or negotiate for a significant price concession are significantly lower. For example, even if the seller doesn’t want to repair the roof, he/she can get bids for the repair work well ahead of time so when the buyer asks for a $10,000 price reduction the seller can hand over 3 bids that average $5,000 and retain negotiating leverage they might otherwise have lost. A pre-listing home inspection will cost between $300 and $500 so it is easy to see there is a real benefit to knowing about any issues before the buyer shows up waving a red flag and screaming “foul”.

A good home inspection and thorough report will bring transparency into a real estate transaction and that benefits all concerned over the long haul. Now, take the pledge to give home inspectors the respect they are due and stop blaming them for “killing” deals. Even the ancient Greeks stopped killing the messenger centuries ago.

Yours truly,

Rodney Dangerfield

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4130 Mohican Cir
Corpus Christi, TX
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