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TOPIC: Extra Inspections

Extra Inspections 15 years 7 months ago #3764

I just went to a networking function last Monday and had a couple of requests.  One was do I do termite inspections and the other was if I videoed ductwork.

Do any of you guys do these things?

I can see doing the termite inspection but as an Oklahoma inspector that’s as far as I could take it.  I wouldn’t be able to do any type of remediation (if I did a home inspection).  I would like to look further into this but I’m not quite sure where to look.  If anyone has any helpful hints for me, please let me know.

As far as the ductwork is concerned, I just don’t see a large need for this.  I have looked at prices for video scopes and they are expensive.  I just can’t see making enough money to pay for this as a service (at least this early in my career).  Any thoughts or comments on this?

I keep thinking thermal imaging is where I should take my business.  Again, equipment is expensive.  Do you guys get large demand for this added feature?

Where do you guys think the future is going for home inspections?

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HLC Home Inspections LLC
www.OklahomaHomeInspector.biz
We are a licensed inspector for the state of Oklahoma.?  Our focus is Oklahoma City, Moore, Mustang, Yukon, Tuttle, and many other areas surrounding OKC.
HLC-Home-Inspections-Oklahoma-City

HLC Home Inspections LLC...

Re: Extra Inspections 15 years 7 months ago #3775

IR is good if you got the spare $$$$$

I myself stick to the bread and butter.

If you are not making much in regular HI, you will not need to worry about aux services, the way I see it.

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Re: Extra Inspections 15 years 7 months ago #3778

I for one don't do termite inspections.  There are dozens of termite companies in my area (home inspection companies too!), and I only get a couple of calls a year for termite.  If I marketed it I might make more, but to me it seems to be a different arena.

I think technology and gadgets are the future of home inspections, particularly IR.  John McKenna will not do an inspection unless they pay him to do an IR at the same time.  He is NOT in a populated area, and people pay his fees.  He does two a day, max.  His fees probably start at $600 or $700.  Prices for the cameras are coming down.  On the networking meeting I was at last week, I met a guy who sells them.  He told me about what the newer cameras will do that mine won't, what the software will do that mine won't, etc.  And, by comparison to mine, cheap!

For me, the IR camera was a real boon, purchased early 2005.  My marketing had something to do with it, but there is still a paradigm shift needed in mental attitudes.  People, generally, don't know these things are out there, and still, few home inspectors use them.  Steve Ramos promotes them for us on his HGTV show, and that has been good.   

I do lots of one-year warranty inspections.  Always I suggest to the client that they have me do an IR at the same time.  The simple question, "Do you have rooms that are hot in summer and cold in winter?" always gets a response.  Then I drop the fee $100 if they do an IR at the same time as the HI. 

Here is also why they are interested.  I say, "We are told never to say never.  Well, these days, almost NEVER do builders staple insulation into place.  They say (this is true) that they use over sized insulation and the drywall holds it into place.  Well, they may use over sized stuff, though personally I have never seen any, but even so, gravity works.  Especially over time.  And, if your insulation has slipped, the camera will detect it.  It is better to do it now while the builder will fix it because, frankly, the fix is not cheap!"

Sell the sizzle not the steak!  It works every time.  To further buttress my claim, I can give them phone numbers of recent, happy IR clients of mine who are EXCELLENT missionaries for my cause.  One lady took my report and ran around the neighborhood selling me to everybody coming up on their one-year warranty.  I got LOTS of calls.  I drove through the neighborhood the other day after one of these calls, and another recent client lady walking her dog ran to the car and practically kissed me on the lips!  "The builder fixed EVERYTHING!!  They had to tear down drywall and it took them a long time.  But they did it all!"  The builder (Toll Brothers) is not liking me right now.  There is a reason rooms are hot and cold... and an IR photo is not a guess, it is DEFINITIVE.

It is amazing how there is not enough time to do a job right the first time, like staple insulation, but there is time to come back later and fix it.

See my blog entry yesterday about this very thing --

jaymarkanich.activerain.com/

By the way, this blog thing is working out!  I already have two new clients in my area, who, shockingly*, had never heard of me, but are using me now.  I am a dutiful blogger for only about 5 days...   ;)  If you want to join Active Rain, I will be happy to sponsor you.  Lemmino!

*  I know, I know, can you believe it!  Geez, the lack of proper upbringing and social politic of some people is amazing isn't it?  And the nerve!!  Well, better late than never...

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Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC
Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia
www.jaymarinspect.com
Northern Virginia Home Inspector
Festina Lente - Make Haste Slowly

Re: Extra Inspections 15 years 7 months ago #3779

IR in my opinion is not something you should do with spare $$$.

Look at it as an investment.  Check around your area - talk to realtors about how they perceive the need.  Oftentimes they don't know about it, or certainly don't know how powerful a tool it is.  Ask them, or their offices, if they would be interested in home inspectors who used the devices.  Do some advanced planning and marketing. 

If you have to borrow the money, with diligent effort, it will pay off.  It did for me, and I am no Einstein...

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Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC
Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia
www.jaymarinspect.com
Northern Virginia Home Inspector
Festina Lente - Make Haste Slowly

Re: Extra Inspections 15 years 7 months ago #3780

P.s.  In my area anyway I don't know anyone that does duct work videos.  I don't really see the need.  If the entrance is caked with dust, and organisms, the rest of the duct is too.  Time to get them cleaned!

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Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC
Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia
www.jaymarinspect.com
Northern Virginia Home Inspector
Festina Lente - Make Haste Slowly

Re: Extra Inspections 15 years 7 months ago #3782

Oh you don't have to sell me on IR.  I want one!  I found a FLIR IRC57 at Granger http://www.grainger.com/Grainger/items/2PZD6 .  Seems this is just about the cheapest one I can find.  Money is the problem.  I'm still trying to get 3 inspections a month right now.  :(  All the realtor we talked to said the same thing.  There are tons of houses on the market, tons of people looking, but no one is buying right now.  Houses are staying on the market longer so people are taking their time purchasing.  I've even started driving around looking for for realtor signs and putting brochures in their doors.

I think around here the termite inspection would REALLY help my business out.  I wouldn't have to buy any equipment if I stick with just inspecting.  Or I could buy the equipment and make money outside of home inspections!

So if anyone knows where I can get a $10,000 grant, let me know!  :D

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HLC Home Inspections LLC
www.OklahomaHomeInspector.biz
We are a licensed inspector for the state of Oklahoma.?  Our focus is Oklahoma City, Moore, Mustang, Yukon, Tuttle, and many other areas surrounding OKC.
HLC-Home-Inspections-Oklahoma-City

HLC Home Inspections LLC...
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