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I start with a base fee then add so many dollars for each 100SF, depending on whether the house sits on a slab or has a crawl.

The only formula that works perfectly is to charge by the hour but alas, clients want to know up-front how much it will cost, so we guess.

Marc

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I don't have any quantifiable rule which I could share explaining how I price inspections. I take into account several factors including distance, square footage, age, crawlspace versus slab foundation, presence or absence of any outbuildings, etc.

Frankly, I tend to be more expensive than average on the really small home that's 60 years old or more. They simply take longer. Conversely, I might easily be less expensive on the 2000 square foot (or more) home that's ten years old or less, especially if it sits on a concrete slab. (Do this long enough and you will quickly realize that there's nothing good in a crawlspace.)

The bottom line is that it's all a matter of how long it takes me to perform the inspection, discuss my findings with the client, and produce a well written report. Do enough inspections and you will figure out what the items are that take up your time.

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Hi- When it comes to pricing an inspection- is it by the sq. footage of the house or is it the value of the house or something else. Thanks, Pat

Are we asking about HUD Fee Inspections or 203(K) Consultant? I do Fee Inspections and I charge based on the average time it takes to look at upgrades completed and to fill out the report. From start to finish I usually have about 2 hours invested.

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There's no rule. Every inspector does it his own way.

Totally agreed. I do my best to judge how much time it will take me to do a good job. Many factors are part of the decision. It's something you get used to after a while. I'm on target most of the time with a slight miss either way now and then. It all evens out.

I never negotiate lower, especially when a potential client claims they got a cheaper quote from another inspector. I politely tell them the quality of my work is worth my fee and if I'm not working for them at that rate, I'll be doing it for someone else. 9 times out of 10, they go ahead and hire me.

$50 extra for 100 jobs = $5000

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I charge a flat rate minimum for any home with up to five bedrooms and three bathrooms. I charge extras when a home starts to get larger with more bedrooms, bathrooms, kitchens, out buildings, etc..

It is my experience that inspecting a small 3 bedroom/2 bathroom home with a basement takes almost the same time as a large five bedroom home three and a half bathrooms. The cost of the house has nothing to do with my fee. Typically, a less expensive and neglected small home is more time consuming than a large clean home. An extra bathroom or bedroom is not a big deal. The major systems and building components are bascially the same, just bigger.

I discount for condos because I limit my inspection to within the condo space and individual systems. Common areas and shared systems are excluded.

I charge extra for multi family.

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It always kind of surprises people when small homes take as much time as a large home. The only things I find that drastically alter my time are under floor crawlspaces, multiple heating systems, outbuildings, or multiple attics.

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I can relate to that now that I've begun allowing my inspection approach to depend on the conditions of the particular house being inspected. The approach changes but the time spent inspecting and reporting doesn't vary much. It's an argument against a strict 'per SF' approach to pricing.

Marc

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I don't change my price based on whether there is an attic versus non-attic or whether there is a basement versus a slab versus a crawspace or whether the house is new or a hundred years old. I go strictly by square footage and distance travelled and I've found that approach to be less complicated and actually more profitable. Don't know why, it just has been since I went from a flat rate to one based on square footage.

(Do this long enough and you will quickly realize that there's nothing good in a crawlspace.)

you hit the nail on the head.

Aw, a crawlspace ain't nothing but a really short basement with a dirt floor covered by a layer of plastic. Like basements, some are clean and easy to do and some are dirty and a pain-in-the-ass. I've noticed through this forum that back east where crawlspaces aren't so common they seem to be roomier and cleaner than the typical squabble hole we have to slide around in out here.

The most difficult part about doing crawlspaces is getting through them when they are narrow. The older I get the harder they get. I could do about 13 houses with crawls a week a decade ago; now I do four a week and I feel like the Seahawks have been using me for a tackling dummy.

I'd love to be down in Arizona where most homes are on slabs and attics are few and far between. That would be hog heaven.

ONE TEAM - ONE FIGHT!!!

Mike

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back east where crawlspaces aren't so common they seem to be roomier and cleaner than the typical squabble hole we have to slide around in out here.

Where do I find these crawlspaces? Most buildings I inspect have a basement, sometimes two, only big enough for the systems, and multiple crawlspaces with just enough clearance above the mud for me to perform my ferret-like convolutions.
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I dunno, Bill; but if examples posted on this site over the past decade are emblematic of what most are like back east, you must not be inspecting in the right neighborhoods. [;)]

Did a pretty decent house yesterday; but when I came out of that crawl and showed the pictures of all of the damage that rodents had done in there he couldn't get out of there fast enough. There's something about dark holes filled with soiled insulation, insulation hanging down in dregs and a carpet of rodent droppings that gives folks more wings than Redbull.

ONE TEAM - ONE FIGHT!!!

Mike

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