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telco_mtl

join:2012-01-06

3 recommendations

Respect to experts

I would like to start off saying i moonlight as a house inspector, I took a 2 year course approved by the AIBQ and ANIEB and it was given by ASHII certified instructors. It was very thourough and not mickey mouse course some people assume, but sadly some people who took this course now feel they are experts in all fields of the trades. When i see collegues getting into arguments with skilled trades people it saddens me, we are there for the potential home owner to see if there are any possible issues, and guide them to the appropiate place for deeper advice. As well sadly a lot of these people have never been on a job site, growing up i was a helper to both a plumber and electrician, by no means am i an expert, but i have seen the good the bad and the ugly. all that being said, i just want Nunya and Whizkid to know that the acts of a select few in my field do not represent the opinions of the majority and i tip my hat to them for the fine advice and guidance they offer this forum.


leibold
Premium,MVM
join:2002-07-09
Sunnyvale, CA
kudos:10
Reviews:
·SONIC.NET

1 recommendation

Well said. I'd just like to add that I consider home/house inspectors to be experts as well. I was well served with the one that inspected my home. He didn't find everything and much of what he found wasn't perhaps overly important. I was impressed simply by the amount of things he looked at that I would never have thought of as possible problems. I don't expect a home/house inspector to be an expert in every field instead they need to be more of a generalist. I expect them to have sufficient knowledge of all the major trades to spot trouble and where necessary I expect them to recommend detailed inspection by a mason, electrician, plumber, roofer and so on.

Just like any other profession there are good ones and not so good ones. Ask friends, neighbors and coworkers to find out who they used and whether or not they were satisfied with the results. Then hire the most recommended one. Don't hire the cheapest inspector and expect an above average performance.

I don't understand anybody who would consider making as important a decision as buying a house without getting an expert opinion from a home/house inspector.
--
Got some spare cpu cycles ? Join Team Helix or Team Starfire!

garys_2k
Premium
join:2004-05-07
Farmington, MI
Reviews:
·Callcentric
reply to telco_mtl
I agree. I'm a licensed P.E. and I ALWAYS ask for help from the trade masters (not so much from the helpers) when non-typical situations come up. I figure they're more likely than I have to have seen it before and I'm always willing to learn.

Sometimes I just know when to leave stuff to the pros. I had a new garage door installed at my house a few months ago. Yeah, I'm an engineer and yeah, I know how those doors work, but I asked the installer if he wanted any bottled water or if he needed to use the bathroom -- otherwise I left him alone and told him he could knock on the door if he wanted to talk to me.

He was really surprised later when I told him I was an engineer. He said that he would've expected all sorts of supervision, free advice and "guidance" during the job. I told him that I figured he could handle his own job.

I come here to learn and learn I have. The real professionals here are awesome for taking the time to share their knowledge with the rest of us. A very big THANK YOU! from my heart to all of you!


nunya
LXI 483
Premium,MVM
join:2000-12-23
O Fallon, MO
kudos:12
Reviews:
·Charter
·voip.ms

1 edit

2 recommendations

reply to telco_mtl
I was kind of disappointed to see the bashing of home inspectors as a whole because of one knuckle head (Not the OP, but in regard to a previous thread).
A home inspector is a vital first line of defense for every home buyer. No person can be an expert in every field.
Just like any other occupation, there are some bad apples in every bunch. That will never change. I can think of 10 knucklehead electricians right of the top of my head. Guys who have no business touching wire and probably bribed their way to a license.
Likening the occupation of a home inspector to other menial jobs (I think "fry cook" was tossed about) isn't appropriate either.
I still highly recommend a home inspection to potential buyers. I think most mortgage companies require them now anyway, right?

An expert home inspector is worth their weight in gold.
--
...because I care.

telco_mtl

join:2012-01-06
said by nunya:

I was kind of disappointed to see the bashing of home inspectors as a whole because of one knuckle head.
A home inspector is a vital first line of defense for every home buyer. No person can be an expert in every field.
Just like any other occupation, there are some bad apples in every bunch. That will never change. I can think of 10 knucklehead electricians right of the top of my head. Guys who have no business touching wire and probably bribed their way to a license.
Likening the occupation of a home inspector to other menial jobs (I think "fry cook" was tossed about) isn't appropriate either.
I still highly recommend a home inspection to potential buyers. I think most mortgage companies require them now anyway, right?

An expert home inspector is worth their weight in gold.

I may have come across the wrong way bashing the field, but there isnt enough control in the field of inspections, here in canada the real estate market is still fairly good, and these people are in high demand, sadly too many people who have no prior building experience are doing it.

Some consumers are blinded by the glitz that some of these guys put on. When i bought my home, the inspector i hired did an excellent job, his report was clear and detailed. He was barely litterate and had many spelling and grammar errors, to the untrained eye it could be seen as a terrible report, personally i found it great. On the other hand my friend had his house inspected, he got a hard covered binder with lots of photos and checklists, he thinks its great, i looked at it, its 10 pounds of fluff.

My point was i see guys even around where i live who will contradict the word of an experienced electrician who was brought in post inspection.

Viper677
Certified Home Inspector

join:2012-03-22
Toronto
reply to telco_mtl

we are there for the potential home owner to see if there are any possible issues, ...

You are not correct, perhaps you should consider mentoring someone experienced like myself for a few inspections till you get this correct. You are looking for current issue NOT possible issues (well that too but the focus is on what is there NOW).


i have seen the good the bad and the ugly.


You seem to be new in business and for you to target an experienced home inspector and calling yourself someone who has seen 'the good the bad and the ugly' is an overstatement.
--
Certified Home Inspector
Certified Level 1 Thermographer

Viper677
Certified Home Inspector

join:2012-03-22
Toronto
reply to telco_mtl
All,

Stop making statements like, 'the inspector you hired was the best of the best and you really liked his work' unless you are a home inspector yourself and can see what he did and if he missed anything.

You might think that your inspector was great until you start finding problems.

For example (I love using examples).

You buy a house in summer with a nice deck at the back, you get it inspected, inspection was great, you love your inspector and you tell stories to your friends.

Winter comes, it snows heavily and you realized that your high eff. furnace stopped working. You find out the exhaust pipe and fresh air intake both were under the deck, show accumulates in the winter, exhaust gases go back through the fresh air intake, sensor in the furnace senses that and shuts off the furnace. You then realize that the inspector that you had hired (who you thought was the best, missed that part).

So lets not get carried away with your inspection experience.

Summary: You dont know if an inspector was great until you start seeing problems.

I can give 10 more examples if you like.
--
Certified Home Inspector
Certified Level 1 Thermographer


Nick_L
Premium
join:2003-01-22
Pittsburgh, PA

2 recommendations

said by Viper677:

I can give 10 more examples if you like.

Please don't.


Fronkman
An Apple a day keeps the doctor away
Premium
join:2003-06-23
Saint Louis, MO
reply to telco_mtl
I am sure there are good home inspectors out there, but my own experience as well as that of almost everyone I know who has purchased a house would indicate that most home-inspectors think they are much more of experts than they actually are.

During the purchase of my house I walked around with the inspector and discussed the mechanicals of the house with him. One of my concerns was that the house contained knob and tube wiring. I was distracted by a phone call with the real estate agent while the HI looked around the basement. I later came down the stairs and this was the conversation:

ME: "So how much knob & tube did you find?"
HI: "None, this house is fine."
ME: "None? I can see two separate circuits of K&T from where I am standing"
HI: "Oh, that isn't knob and tube, there are any white thingies"
ME: "Um, look another 3 feet to right"
HI: "Oh yeah, I will add that to my report"

Later conversation:
HI: "These radiator systems are great. The only think you have to worry about is the pump going out"
ME: "This is a steam radiator, there is no pump"
HI: "Are you sure?"
ME: "All of the radiators are single pipe. Besides, we are looking right at the boiler. There isn't a pump"
HI: "Oh, well I will change that in the report."

Keep in mind I am a doctor, not a home inspector or tradesperson of any kind. I shouldn't know more than the inspector. I realize that it is difficult for inspectors to know everything about everything. However, it seems like the vast majority use this "checklist" based approach which seems to be overly concerned with whether particular appliances have recalls rather than taking a careful look at the condition of said item or the workmanship (or lack thereof) of installation.

Oh, and this experience clearly strikes a chord with many homeowners. Why else would shows like "Holmes on Homes" be so popular?
--
Everyone should own a Mac! Go Bucks!

Viper677
Certified Home Inspector

join:2012-03-22
Toronto
said by Fronkman:

I am sure there are good home inspectors out there, but my own experience as well as that of almost everyone I know who has purchased a house would indicate that most home-inspectors think they are much more of experts than they actually are.

During the purchase of my house I walked around with the inspector and discussed the mechanicals of the house with him. One of my concerns was that the house contained knob and tube wiring. I was distracted by a phone call with the real estate agent while the HI looked around the basement. I later came down the stairs and this was the conversation:

ME: "So how much knob & tube did you find?"
HI: "None, this house is fine."
ME: "None? I can see two separate circuits of K&T from where I am standing"
HI: "Oh, that isn't knob and tube, there are any white thingies"
ME: "Um, look another 3 feet to right"
HI: "Oh yeah, I will add that to my report"

Later conversation:
HI: "These radiator systems are great. The only think you have to worry about is the pump going out"
ME: "This is a steam radiator, there is no pump"
HI: "Are you sure?"
ME: "All of the radiators are single pipe. Besides, we are looking right at the boiler. There isn't a pump"
HI: "Oh, well I will change that in the report."

Keep in mind I am a doctor, not a home inspector or tradesperson of any kind. I shouldn't know more than the inspector. I realize that it is difficult for inspectors to know everything about everything. However, it seems like the vast majority use this "checklist" based approach which seems to be overly concerned with whether particular appliances have recalls rather than taking a careful look at the condition of said item or the workmanship (or lack thereof) of installation.

Oh, and this experience clearly strikes a chord with many homeowners. Why else would shows like "Holmes on Homes" be so popular?

The above conversation between you and your HI does not hurt my feelings. There are good and bad inspectors out there just like in any other field/trade.

The problem here is with you not hiring the right home inspector and is not with the home inspectors in general. If you knew that much about building envelope then I would have expected you to hire a better HI.

If you went by what the real estate recommended then its again your fault and you should talk to your realtor about that.
--
Certified Home Inspector
Certified Level 1 Thermographer

Viper677
Certified Home Inspector

join:2012-03-22
Toronto
reply to Nick_L
said by Nick_L:

said by Viper677:

I can give 10 more examples if you like.

Please don't.

And your point is?
--
Certified Home Inspector
Certified Level 1 Thermographer

telco_mtl

join:2012-01-06
reply to Viper677
said by Viper677:

we are there for the potential home owner to see if there are any possible issues, ...

You are not correct, perhaps you should consider mentoring someone experienced like myself for a few inspections till you get this correct. You are looking for current issue NOT possible issues (well that too but the focus is on what is there NOW).


i have seen the good the bad and the ugly.


You seem to be new in business and for you to target an experienced home inspector and calling yourself someone who has seen 'the good the bad and the ugly' is an overstatement.

when i said the good bad and ugly i never targeted home inspectors if i was unclear i am sorry, i meant from when i was working on jobsites as a laborer for an electrican and a plumber, i was not reffering to inspectors.
as for current issues, yes, that is the reason that i always include the temperature, season, conditions (snow, mud etc) on a report as things can change from day to day. But possible issues that could crop up are always somthing to include if you mention they need to be monitored. Roof that is getting on in years, may not need replacing right away but should be monitored etc.

same thing goes for drainage, I may come by on a warm july day, ground is dry, no signs of water infiltration, but a visual shows the lot is graded towards the house, you will include a mention that drainage may be an issue,


Fronkman
An Apple a day keeps the doctor away
Premium
join:2003-06-23
Saint Louis, MO
reply to Viper677
said by Viper677:

If you went by what the real estate recommended then its again your fault and you should talk to your realtor about that.

Nice of you to just write off my experience by saying that my realtor is the one at fault, not the home inspector who had no business collecting money for the work he was doing.

In fact, I didn't use my realtor at all. I instead obtained recommendations from friends, scoured internet sites like Angie's List. We had a list of 10 companies that we asked for sample reports and resumes of the inspectors. We ultimately chose a company with a BBB rating of A+, an inspector with 25 years of "experience" along with all of the various licensing and certifications. I don't know what more we could have done.
--
Everyone should own a Mac! Go Bucks!


nunya
LXI 483
Premium,MVM
join:2000-12-23
O Fallon, MO
kudos:12
Reviews:
·Charter
·voip.ms

1 recommendation

reply to Viper677


mattmag
Premium,ExMod 2000-03
join:2000-04-09
NW Illinois
kudos:3
reply to Viper677
said by Viper677:

The problem here is with you not hiring the right home inspector and is not with the home inspectors in general. If you knew that much about building envelope then I would have expected you to hire a better HI.

Actually, the problem here is that you lost your credibility several days ago, and you may need to do some serious damage control to restore that, if its even possible...

Viper677
Certified Home Inspector

join:2012-03-22
Toronto
reply to Fronkman
said by Fronkman:

said by Viper677:

If you went by what the real estate recommended then its again your fault and you should talk to your realtor about that.

Nice of you to just write off my experience by saying that my realtor is the one at fault, not the home inspector who had no business collecting money for the work he was doing.

In fact, I didn't use my realtor at all. I instead obtained recommendations from friends, scoured internet sites like Angie's List. We had a list of 10 companies that we asked for sample reports and resumes of the inspectors. We ultimately chose a company with a BBB rating of A+, an inspector with 25 years of "experience" along with all of the various licensing and certifications. I don't know what more we could have done.

I never tried to write-off your experience, I actually gave you credit for your knowledge.

There are good inspectors and there are bad inspectors and unfortunately you hired (unintentionally) someone who was not good enough (based on what was said, i was not there nor i have seen that report so I can not say for sure).
--
Certified Home Inspector
Certified Level 1 Thermographer

Viper677
Certified Home Inspector

join:2012-03-22
Toronto
reply to mattmag
said by mattmag:

said by Viper677:

The problem here is with you not hiring the right home inspector and is not with the home inspectors in general. If you knew that much about building envelope then I would have expected you to hire a better HI.

Actually, the problem here is that you lost your credibility several days ago, and you may need to do some serious damage control to restore that, if its even possible...

Not really. I am not really worried about it. You should relax too.
--
Certified Home Inspector
Certified Level 1 Thermographer


Nick_L
Premium
join:2003-01-22
Pittsburgh, PA

2 recommendations

reply to Viper677
said by Viper677:

said by Nick_L:

said by Viper677:

I can give 10 more examples if you like.

Please don't.

And your point is?

Your postings here contain a higher than average percentage of hyperbole and a woefully inadequate quantity of factual information.

Also, have you heard the one about it being better to remain silent and...

I can' make it much clearer without violating the guidelines of this forum.

Viper677
Certified Home Inspector

join:2012-03-22
Toronto

inadequate quantity of factual information.

Every example that I have given you is based on fact. I dont like stories. If you are unable to extract the fact out of my examples then you know very little about my business and you should then.....(see below)

Also, have you heard the one about it being better to remain silent and...

so remain silent...
--
Certified Home Inspector
Certified Level 1 Thermographer


Fronkman
An Apple a day keeps the doctor away
Premium
join:2003-06-23
Saint Louis, MO
said by Viper677:

Every example that I have given you is based on fact. I dont like stories.

My "story" was full of all kinds of facts. My home inspector was unable to identify knob and tube wiring and tell the difference between steam and hot water radiators. Another home inspector I have dealt with railed endlessly about FPE breakers but completely ignored the multiwire circuit which terminated on a tandem breaker on the same phase. (theoretical vs. ACTUAL danger)

If you ask my personal opinion, I don't really put a lot of stock into the report of ANY HI. Generalists with limited or no practical experience (either in a trade or advanced-level DIY) can only provide a general level of information. I think most people should assume that the HI missed at least 50% of the problems in the home and factor that into the price negotiations.

In the end, I did my own inspection and made sure that the "official" report included my findings by essentially holding the HI's hand. The sad fact is that the seller will never believe the findings of the buyer but are forced to correct issues that appear in the official report.
--
Everyone should own a Mac! Go Bucks!

Hellrazor
Bah Humbug

join:2002-02-02
Abyss, PA
Reviews:
·Service Electric..
reply to Viper677
said by Viper677:

said by mattmag:

said by Viper677:

The problem here is with you not hiring the right home inspector and is not with the home inspectors in general. If you knew that much about building envelope then I would have expected you to hire a better HI.

Actually, the problem here is that you lost your credibility several days ago, and you may need to do some serious damage control to restore that, if its even possible...

Not really. I am not really worried about it. You should relax too.

I have been passively reading your posts in multiple topics the last few days and have pretty much wrote you off as an arrogant know it all. There is no easy fix for that and I will guarantee most people will start ignoring you.

Your arrogance towards some of the long term members on here, who are licensed in their trades is pathetic. I see that kind of gun ho stuff from rookie muni inspectors or cocky engineers who think they are gods gift. If you are this cocky on the job site, there is a very good chance I would boot you right off the job.

I get to play project manager at work. I am a jack of no trades that has to do everything from site work to dealing with all of the primes to dealing with the engineers. I just finished up a $4million reno project overseeing all phases of the work. When you get to the big leagues you learn the trades can be your friends on a job. Being a prick has its place at times but working with them to get things done gets you a lot farther in life.

Viper677
Certified Home Inspector

join:2012-03-22
Toronto
reply to Fronkman

In the end, I did my own inspection and made sure that the "official" report included my findings by essentially holding the HI's hand. The sad fact is that the seller will never believe the findings of the buyer but are forced to correct issues that appear in the official report.

You did your own inspection? - works for me. Just one question, how did you manage to inspection roof coverings? Just curious.
--
Certified Home Inspector
Certified Level 1 Thermographer

Viper677
Certified Home Inspector

join:2012-03-22
Toronto
reply to Hellrazor

If you are this cocky on the job site, there is a very good chance I would boot you right off the job.

The only problem with this scenario is that you booting me off the job comes after I decided to let you retain my services. You skipped one step. You will be surprised to find out how many inspection requests i refuse because the client think he can boss me around.

I get to play project manager at work.

The difference is that you are on a payroll and I am a business owner.

You still want to continue with me?
--
Certified Home Inspector
Certified Level 1 Thermographer


49528867
Premium
join:2010-04-16
Fort Lauderdale, FL
kudos:3

1 recommendation

reply to Viper677
said by Viper677:

You did your own inspection? - works for me. Just one question, how did you manage to inspection roof coverings? Just curious.

Hey how about a couple of questions for you too?

Asphalt shingled roof 125 wind rating, half inch ply deck nailed 16 by 6.

How do you inspect it?

Overhead fed 200 amp (upgraded) service, meter pan and main breaker panel on the exterior of the residence powering the existing distribution panel within the premises.

How do you inspect it?

Same as above, but supplied by buried service conductors.

How do you inspect it?

A home has a natural gas stove, water heater and clothes dryer, the stove has a non-vented hood, the water heater as well as the dryer have a through the ceiling vent.

How do you inspect it?

Same home but propane?

How do you inspect it?

Hope that is not too much, I can tell by your IM’s you have no problem with long responses.

Wayne
--
Madness takes its toll, please have exact change ready…

garys_2k
Premium
join:2004-05-07
Farmington, MI
Reviews:
·Callcentric
reply to Viper677
said by Viper677:

inadequate quantity of factual information.

Every example that I have given you is based on fact. I dont like stories. If you are unable to extract the fact out of my examples then you know very little about my business and you should then.....(see below)

Also, have you heard the one about it being better to remain silent and...

so remain silent...

As you should have done with that wiring table. Hard to imagine that you argued as you did, in violation of all sorts of codes, but yet you did...

Mike Holmes LOVES guys like you!


Daarken
Rara Avises
Premium
join:2005-01-12
Southwest LA
kudos:3

1 recommendation

reply to 49528867
Its been a while since I dropped some Kudos..
I see several in the near future.
Unfortunately I already gave one guy the middle finger a couple of times in this thread itself.
--
Getting it Done.

Viper677
Certified Home Inspector

join:2012-03-22
Toronto
reply to 49528867
Four things for you:

How do you inspect it?

1. Last time I checked, I asked Fronkman this question and you aint no Fronkman.

2. The reason why I asked this question was not to question the inspection routine (which you think i did which is why you gave me this list to test me) but I wanted to find out how a normal person can get up on the roof without a ladder. Even though my next question from Fronkman was going to be what did he look for when he inspected his roof (only if he 'managed' to get up on the roof)?

buried service conductors.

3 By this do you mean service laterals? Try using the correct terminology, helps you with branding

you have no problem with long responses.

4 In this case, I kinda do.
--
Certified Home Inspector
Certified Level 1 Thermographer


SwedishRider
Rider on the Storm
Premium
join:2006-01-11
not Sweden
kudos:1

1 recommendation

reply to Daarken
said by Daarken:

Unfortunately I already gave one guy the middle finger a couple of times in this thread itself.

Maybe that should be suggested as a site option in addition to the thumbs up.

robbin
Premium,MVM
join:2000-09-21
Leander, TX
kudos:1
reply to Viper677
said by Viper677:

but I wanted to find out how a normal person can get up on the roof without a ladder.

Where was it stated that no ladder was used? What do you mean by "normal person"? Do home inspectors not use ladders?


Cho Baka
Premium,MVM
join:2000-11-23
there
kudos:2
Reviews:
·TekSavvy DSL

2 recommendations

said by robbin:

Do home inspectors not use ladders?

Hmmm. Snakes do not use ladders.

The parallels are amazing:

Snakes and Ladders

--
The talented hawk speaks French.