Jump to content


Recommended Posts

It is good to have a good contract, take a lot of pictures and CYA.....

Went to small claims court with a client last Monday. Judge threw out case due to wrong venue and forum, my contract has arbitration clause and has to be in my county.

Long story short... guy bought vacant manufactured home, first inspection revealed pretty clean crawlspace, no rodent (scat, pee or smell) evidence. He took possession 70 days later and crawlspace was pretty trashed. A fire during that period had burnt to his property line.

A 'rodent' professional had (supposedly) told him (over the phone) that damage had to have been there and inspector missed it. And that 'one drop of alpha rodent urine' will ruin entire crawlspace, new ducts, insulation, deodorize to the tune of more than $5000. He bought the line and came after me to pay for his misfortune.

At reinspect I had told him the damage wasn't there at first inspection, he needs to read WA SOP and our contract which excludes, animal, rodents, not visible areas and future conditions, and IF SIGNIFICANT DAMAGE HAD BEEN THERE I would have noted the damage and told him.

So ... to court I went, got it dismissed on a technicality but was fully prepared to defend the case on its merits (photos of original, fire photos, reinspect photos and photos of what rodent damage looks like (from past inspection) I put together a 'damage report'

I billed him for cost per my contract $75 per half hour for 6 hrs of time, travel, court appearance etc. He can now file for binding arbitration in my county if he chooses.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Good job, Jerry!

I had one like that a couple of years ago. I noticed a couple of dead mice and one or two batts knocked down and told the client to get a rodent guy out to find the points of entry, block them, remove the rodents, etc..

Nine months later the client contacted me and wanted to know how I'd missed a major rodent issue. Seems that she hadn't done a thing for 8 months and then she finally decided to get a rodent guy out to take a look. He came out of the crawlspace and declared it a disaster to the tune of $11K.

I sent her a copy of the SOP and a copy of the contract as well as quoted verbatim from the report my observations and sent a copy of the photo that I'd enclosed in the report taken at the time of the inspection. showing almost no damage and told her to compare that photo to what she had now.

Told her I had no intention of paying an $11K bill because she didn't bother to read the report or follow the recommendations in the report.

Haven't heard a peep out of her since then.



Link to comment
Share on other sites

When I first got into this business, an old inspector told me to do every inspection "like a lawyer was looking over your shoulder." Remembering that has always reminded me to mention things in my inspection reports that seem small but could have come back to bite.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The insp the other day had me on high alert. Client got my name from a lawyer, kinda good. The home was a local builders....kinda good...

As always walk into the home and pretend that the cameras are rolling.....and then write the report like my mom will be using it....I was thanked by the seller when I left, yes they were there. And again by the client.....I felt the pressure a bit on that one....

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Create New...