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Showing content with the highest reputation since 04/25/2017 in all areas

  1. T'was 6 days before Christmas, and all through the town, people wore masks, that covered their frown. The frown had begun way back in the spring when a global pandemic changed everything. They called it corona, but unlike the beer, It didn’t bring good times, it didn’t bring cheer. Airplanes were grounded, travel was banned. Borders were closed across air, sea, and land. As the world entered lockdown to flatten the curve, the economy halted, and folks lost their nerve. From March to July we rode the first wave, people stayed home, they tried to behave. When summer emerged the lockdown wa
    6 points
  2. I was a mechanic for a long time. Many of you have heard me say, "I'm still a better mechanic than I am anything else." Even though I fixed every single thing that came into my shop, I couldn't have fixed any of it without tools. Many inspectors simply do not have the proper tools in their box to enable them to produce quality reports. If you can't write, you can't write a great report.
    6 points
  3. Taking photos is like choosing words. Adding many more doesn't fix the few well chosen ones that you missed. You may have much experience in claims but you're at the tail end trying to fix something. We're at the beginning trying to create that something.
    5 points
  4. Is this your first time looking at milled lumber? Everything in your pictures is perfectly normal. These are characteristics of lumber, which is a natural product that comes from large plants called "trees." The characteristics in your pictures are all taken into account when lumber is graded. The ugly things in the 1st, 2nd, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, and 14th pictures are old injuries to the tree that have scabbed over, probably from wind damage where limbs broke off. Don't worry about them. The lumber grader looked at them and said that they were fine for that grade of lumber.
    4 points
  5. When Someone Asks What Time It Is, Don’t Tell Them How to Build a Watch Even useful information gets lost in a sea of words. Your task is to tell the reader everything they need to know -and no more- clearly and concisely. If you want to include your personal treatise on how to maintain perfectly even heat in a Queen Anne Victorian with no storm windows using an oil-fired steam boiler, then include that as a separate handout; people who are interested can read it. Don’t make the other 99 percent of your clients suffer through it unnecessarily. It makes sense to think of a home inspec
    4 points
  6. I heard of one inspector who saw the note on the front door not to let the cat out. When he was finishing up and went outside and then came back, the cat was on the front porch. He put the cat back in the house and left. Wasn't their cat; cat destroyed the drapes, furniture, etc.
    4 points
  7. a pleasant reminder of my good sense in divorcing my first wife.
    4 points
  8. TIJ is very pleased to announce the first in a series of articles by our own Jim Morrison. He's a reporter for the Banker and Tradesman in Boston and a former home inspector. Buckle up, put your ego in check and learn from the very best. On Improving Your Reports Consider this advice from a close friend, though we've likely never met. For about 25 years, I was a home inspector. Five years or so ago, I left the field to write for newspapers and magazines in a time when most outlets are laying people off. I know a bit about both inspecting and about writing. Most of what follows
    4 points
  9. Sorry, I don't speak bullshit. Could you explain *exactly* what it is that you plan to do?
    3 points
  10. A new one for me; 1950 era window latch. Allows for latching while sash is partially raised.
    3 points
  11. Actually, I suspect that none of this is worth your time. A 21 year old with no experience in the trades, no experience running a past business, and without a full-time mentor for several years cannot become a successful home inspector. It's just not going to happen. If your lack of technical knowledge doesn't get you sued into oblivion, your lack of business acumen will result in a failed business within a few years. My revised best advice: Cut your losses and forget about home inspections. At your age, you should find the thing in life that you enjoy doing more than anything else
    3 points
  12. Challenge accepted in 36 words: Serious concerns include non-viable floor framing, major heating and air conditioning problems, too many roof layers, no crawlspace access, and inadequate attic access. I can't perform a diligent review without access to these critical areas. Lesson learned: Prepositions can be a huge waste of words.
    3 points
  13. This scary face rose out of the garlic patch.
    3 points
  14. Trent's is WAY too big for me! I"m more of a small raised bed guy. Last year I donated over 1000 tomatoes and untold cucumbers to the homeless shelter from my little plot. Drip irrigation on a timer valve. Black plastic on the ground so I don't have to weed. Just plant, water and harvest. Did way to much weeding in my daddy's garden, which was even bigger than Trent's way back when I was a little one. God forbid he found weeds growing in your section of the garden.
    3 points
  15. I doubt you could pay enough to override my scepticism.
    3 points
  16. Yep, A growing problem with teenage squirrels - sewer gas huffing and huffing parties. A side effect is the urge to gnaw on the nearest object. The squirrel authorities are concerned and want to get the message out to all squirrel parents that sewer gases contain methane, hydrogen-sulfide and other toxic fumes and that huffing sewer gas can lead to death. The teens aren't listening. In fact, a week ago, three of them under the influence of sewer gas knocked over a walnut cache and overpowered and killed the elderly security squirrel guarding the nuts. ONE TEAM - ONE FIGHT!!!
    3 points
  17. Lack of brevity. Some people just go on and on. They keep talking about the same issue in multiple ways. They can't just state things simply and concisely. They feel the need to hammer the issue in from many angles. They just ramble forever about that which could be easily stated in one sentence. They just go on and on and on. . .
    3 points
  18. Of those inspectors who use this coverage as part of their marketing to real estate agents, I'll bet that most, if not all of them do not advertise the fact to their actual customers. In fact, I'll also bet that they intentionally keep quiet about it. Look at it this way: if you were a home buyer and you knew that the inspector that your agent recommended was paying to indemnify that agent, would that elevate the inspector in your eyes? Would it make you think twice about the agent's motivations and the inspector's loyalties? In my experience all but the most credulous home buyers would v
    3 points
  19. My 4 1/2 minutes of fame.
    3 points
  20. A 32' commercial grade extension ladder will probably get you to the roof of more than 90% of American homes. It is also considerably more durable and cheaper than a drone. They weigh about 65 pounds, making them about as heavy as a fourth-grader and much easier to handle. Also, on a residential home inspection, the use of ladders is not subject to federal oversight, another attribute weighing in their favor. So why mess around with drones?
    3 points
  21. I've always found it odd that we dig a round hole in the ground, call it a well, and expect it to produce water. Then we dig a square hole in the ground, call it a basement, and expect it to stay dry.
    3 points
  22. In California, toothpaste causes cancer. So does the box that it comes in. This concludes my rant.
    3 points
  23. I spend a lot of time in the Southeast, so I can translate. At an inspection last week, Jim discovered an outpouring of many problems, right from the start. Jim advised his client that he could abort the inspection and would only have to pay for Jim's time to that point. 10 minutes later, the client asked Jim to discontinue, payed a reduced fee and Jim later issued a letter the client could use to terminate the purchase agreement.
    3 points
  24. Hope y'all adjust to the time loss, and have a great Spring!
    3 points
  25. Actually Phrases From Actual Reports The following bolded comments were taken from reports submitted to me by intrepid TIJ inspectors. I was disappointed because overall, the reports were pretty good. I was really hoping to complete this series with some outstanding examples of horrific writing, but I suppose I should have known better. There were sharp handrail ends at the stairways, which should be serviced to help prevent injury. We know what the writer intended, but a buyer or a contractor might not. How, exactly, does one ‘service’ a sharp railing end?
    3 points
  26. Years ago, Helped Mike and Rose improve their report format. Then took one of my reports, where I liked the format, and I just saved it in MS Word. Then I overwrote it again, and again, and again, changing the descriptions where necessary, names and dates and places, and word-searching and then grabbing an old comment about whatever issue from an old report and editing it as needed to make it fit the current report. I guess I've been doing that for the past 12 or 13 years. I write all full narrative. Some of you will note that I've never posted reports here. Reason is simple, I know
    3 points
  27. The siding radiates only the heat that has already escaped the conditioned space of the structure.
    3 points
  28. Possibly the worst home inspection website I've ever seen. Nothing about it makes me want to hire you.
    2 points
  29. It rings like bullshit.
    2 points
  30. We were wondering whither the weather and whether it will be waxing, waning wintry, windy, wet, or what and where and when?
    2 points
  31. I guess it wouldn't be kosher to use direct language we use among ourselves. This place is a pile of shit with blocked access. I can't and won't inspect it. Don't buy it.
    2 points
  32. I will see you berries and raise you a tomato sandwich.
    2 points
  33. Having a blast. Brought the spouse yesterday for the welcoming event. Meeting friends.
    2 points
  34. I guess this was a handyman's fixit for a roof leak. Looks like a shower curtain modified into a drip catcher.
    2 points
  35. Any chance that roof becomes a hockey rink in the winter? 😬
    2 points
  36. I've never heard one. Come to think of it, I haven't heard much of anything in the last 50 years.
    2 points
  37. The best piece of report writing advice I've come across in a long time comes from this article from The Atlantic magazine from April of this year. https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2019/04/what-makes-candidate-authentic/587857/ The article is mostly about politicians trying to sound authentic, but the ideas translate well to many different professions. Basically the idea is that the more authentic you sound the more you're believed. Quote: In a paper published last month in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, the academics Rachel Gershon and Rosanna K. S
    2 points
  38. Hi Steven, If you want to enjoy what you do, and want to be at it for a long time, don't feed at the realtor trough. Most agents have only their own interest at heart; and, if your inspection doesn't fit what they want, they'll fight you every step of the way and try to remake you into what they want. With a different agent on every home, with different likes and dislikes, that can cause you a whole lot of stress that you don't need. Or, they can simply toss your card, nod and smile at your and accept whatever swag you want to try and bribe them with and still forget you. (Below, I'll tell
    2 points
  39. We have the dates set- March 21-23 at Hotel Henry. Les, this going to be 24 hours of real education- zero fluff. Proving the commitment to quality, Bill Kibbel is on board. Speakers to be announced as they confirm.
    2 points
  40. What happened the third and fourth times?
    2 points
  41. I guess after the first few misses it didn't really matter.
    2 points
  42. I hope you charged an extra $20 for that. Are all the panels 3phase?
    2 points
  43. "Functioning as ANYthing (intended, designed, advertised)" is nothing more than just "functioning". I suppose a furnace could be installed improperly, yet still warm the building without CO sharing airspace with the residents. It's "functioning", doing its bit as a furnace, but that can have little or nothing to do with a proper installation. I'm new to this, but that strikes me as a BS phrase designed to make someone sound high brow. And, apparently, in some places it is functioned and intended..
    2 points
  44. Did you turn him on during the inspection?
    2 points
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