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Implied Command (Imperative Mood) Word Bank


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Here are words well suited for use in our profession in imperative mood:

Address

Adjust

Align

Apply

Arrange

Ask

Budget

Call

Clear

Consider (useful as a way to suggest a future upgrade)

Correct

Create

Dig

Eliminate

Ensure

Excavate

Fasten

Fix

Have

Hire

Improve

Inquire

Insulate

Install

Level

Identify

Inspect

Obtain

Plan

Pull

Reconfigure

Reinforce

Relocate

Remediate

Remedy

Remove

Repair

Replace

Reposition

Request

Reset

Rotate

Secure

Seek

Service

Survey

Test

Use

This is obviously an incomplete list - a start. So, please contribute words that are equally usefull in report writing and I'll move them up into alphabetical order in the list and it can serve as an online resource. Maybe eventually, it can be moved to the download library as a Word document.

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I tend to Recommend. Maybe I should quit that. Not on the list. [:)]

If you start a recommendation with the word recommend, as so many home inspectors do, you're instructing the reader to recommend something. That's not usually what the inspector means to say.

Recommend that a roofer fix the roof.

Recommend that the furnace be serviced.

Recommend that water heater be replaced.

- Jim Katen, Oregon

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Have.

Have a plumber fix it.

Have a plumber check it and do whatever needs doing to fix it.

Have the stained ceiling opened up so the source of the leak can be diagnosed and eliminated. Have any hidden moisture damage above the ceiling addressed as/if needed as well.

You still wanna say recommened? Then say "I recommend you have..."

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Have.

Have a plumber fix it.

Have a plumber check it and do whatever needs doing to fix it.

Have the stained ceiling opened up so the source of the leak can be diagnosed and eliminated. Have any hidden moisture damage above the ceiling addressed as/if needed as well.

You still wanna say recommend? Then say "I recommend you have..."

This is an interesting word:

I was reluctant to respond to "have" until I was able to research it a bit. Although, many of use "have" in this fashion (me included, from time to time), the definition doesn't seem to support the use as a command regarding a personal action. It appears that "have", as a transitive verb, would relate to an object or quality, rather than an action. So, you can say, "Have faith!"; "Have a good day." or "Have a smoke." But, "have someone do something." may be questionable.

The defitions would suggest that, if you choose to use "have", it is proper to write "Have the furnace serviced by a licensed HVAC contractor." instead of "Have a licensed HVAC contractor service the furnace."

Is anyone able to authoritatively nail this down? Jim, Jimmy, Chad? I'm not certain myself. This is a tough one.

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I use "have" quite a bit. It's quibbling to argue it's not appropriate; it might not be grammatically correct.

I never use the term "recommend". Never. I tell folks to do stuff in whatever manner is appropriate for the particular condition.

"Have the sewer videoscoped to determine it's condition".

"Install smoke detectors @ XYZ locations."

"The chimney damper is broken; get it fixed."

Any active voice is appropriate as far as I'm concerned, so long as it's accompanied by a picture and an arrow.

No one understands most of what we talk about anyway; make it simple as possible, and use pictures.

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I don't know that I have anything to add to this thread. I'm not even sure I understand it. The dictionary is my word bank. I've probably used (and occasionally misused) every word in this thread. For HI reports, I say: just use complete sentences and make them unmistakably clear. An inspector should use whatever words or photos he or she needs to get there. Are there any words that should never be used in an inspection report? I can't think of one I'd ban altogether.

I's also add that while Neal's "Go pound sand!" is inappropriate for most inspection reports, it's still a handy phrase for HI's. Customarily, I use it verbally as opposed to in writing, but that's just me.

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I don't know that I have anything to add to this thread. I'm not even sure I understand it. The dictionary is my word bank. I've probably used (and occasionally misused) every word in this thread. For HI reports, I say: just use complete sentences and make them unmistakably clear. An inspector should use whatever words or photos he or she needs to get there. Are there any words that should never be used in an inspection report? I can't think of one I'd ban altogether.

I's also add that while Neal's "Go pound sand!" is inappropriate for most inspection reports, it's still a handy phrase for HI's. Customarily, I use it verbally as opposed to in writing, but that's just me.

Thanks for the responses.

I know this is going to sound a bit masochistic, but I kinda miss the days when you guys (Jim K, Jimmy, Kurt, WJ and Chad), would immediately close in for the kill regarding the slightest corruption of the English language. As brutal as it was to be on the receiving end of such an onslaught, it certainly was educational - English 101. As an eternally aspiring writer, with a long way to go for sure, I liked it.

I have grown to believe that we stay out of trouble by inspecting well, but we create the lasting memory of a professional through writing well. And, I seem to recall Mike O beating into our heads the profession was that right word, as opposed to industry. [:-tophat]

PS. I always particularly enjoyed the tiny under the breath comments WJ would make, regarding a post, that painted a picture of him drumming his fingers while resisting every urge to erupt.

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Or cares, even with a picture.

Man, I don't know about elsewhere, but that's then. Now, folks care a lot.

If I get into anything that matters, they're all over it.

I was getting kinda depressed and looking for anything else to do a few years ago in the "boom", but I'm kinda getting a second wind; now folks actually listen when I talk about the differences between Type O and Type K mortar and why it's important, or explain why end dams and pan flashing are critically important.

Realtors around here, especially the hot shot one's, are in full retreat. I don't even have to talk over them anymore; I tell them to shut up, and they do.

Business is great.

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Business is great.

It isn't bad here, as well. The crummy inspectors have not survived and the decent ones are managing. Realtors here, have been very much with the program for years. They prefer all the bad news on the table now - the big hurdle behind them (their mantra is pretty cosistently "Don't miss anything!"), with just the normal horrors of lending ahead. This is a dream town to inspect in.

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Business is great.

It isn't bad here, as well. The crummy inspectors have not survived and the decent ones are managing. Realtors here, have been very much with the program for years. They prefer all the bad news on the table now - the big hurdle behind them (their mantra is pretty cosistently "Don't miss anything!"), with just the normal horrors of lending ahead. This is a dream town to inspect in.

I wish the above statement was true for my area.

The Realtors don't want things found that with put a delay on the sell.

Their list have newer folks, old a** kissers or the folks that do the inspection,complete their report on site during the same time frame that I take doing an inspection.

I guess I'm PO because I am out having to find a job to make ends meet.

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I guess I'm PO because I am out having to find a job to make ends meet.

Been there and done that, Phillip. When I transitioned from disaster restoration to inspecting, I delivered Pizza at night for two years to make ends meet, and in the past three years I stocked shelves at night for the local grocery store chain and fueled and serviced aircraft at the local airport. We do what we must, don't we?

PS. Regarding Realtors in Richmond, missing something significant is the absolute kiss of death.

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I like the phrase: "use at your own risk."

It removes any doubt from whatever I told them to do about the thing in question.

That old man drilled that one into my head too, Tom.

Along with, "For improved safety" and "I urge you to".

I don't use the I urge you to, because I wouldn't use it if I was talking to you. Sounds kind of phony.

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