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zakisl

Spectacular Inspection Software

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Anyone ever use Spectacular Home Inspection Software. Although they are only running it currently for Apple Products i am considering it when the Android App is introduced in the summer.

Any info on this software is greatly appreciated , I am currently using HIP software for the past five years now. I have grew accustom to it considering the fact i do my reports when i get back to my office it sometimes takes me in excess of 4+HRS to get the report complete. I want a method to start doing my inspections on my tablet. I cant see myself typing away in front of realtors and homeowners who are waiting for me to get out.

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We're using InspectIt and it's great. We deliver our reports on-site; takes us about 10 minutes at the end of the inspection to fine-tune the comments and email it to the client as a PDF. No homework!

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Why is it that when someone comes to a home inspector's forum and asks for information about Inspection Software A, people invariably respond with all kinds of information about Inspection Software B, C, D, E, F, G, H, and I?

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Because HI's are emotionally involved with their software.

No one actually thinks about reportage, they just apply a personal logic that fulfills what they think is important.

"No, no, no....you're not thinking, you're just being logical"........ Neils Bohr

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Why is it that when someone comes to a home inspector's forum and asks for information about Inspection Software A, people invariably respond with all kinds of information about Inspection Software B, C, D, E, F, G, H, and I?

They have no experience with software A so they say something else that's related otherwise they have nothing to say.

I do that all the time. [:-taped]

Marc

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Guilty. But in my defense the op did say he was using HIP and wanted to change to software "A" because he wanted to use a tablet on-site, something his current software will do, an important consideration IMHO.

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Guilty. But in my defense the op did say he was using HIP and wanted to change to software "A" because he wanted to use a tablet on-site, something his current software will do, an important consideration IMHO.

Yes, I got that too. Use your existing software, and streamline your reports with better saved comments. A basic house with not much wrong shouldn't take more than about an hour to write up with pictures and comments.

Set your report templates up better, so that you can run through and select the comments faster.

The tablet is not really a time saver, IMO. Guys that use them spend a longer time in and around the house, in other words, the on-site inspection takes longer. The pics are not as good because there is no flash. The tablet is clumsy to hold and you can't drop it into a holster to free up both hands. I found when I tried one that it was easy to hit the wrong tab, OK I'm clumsy, which means editing or you could be sending reports with blatant errors.

Anyway, compared to 3 other inspectors that used tablets, I was still faster with a camera and a laptop, and I was able to vacate the house or talk with clients while they would still be crawling about with a tablet in one hand.

I like writing personalized comments for the defects, always full sentences, so the laptop keyboard is important for me.

Go ahead and try it, but don't expect a great saving in time. Also, don't let your technologies distract you from inspecting.

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If someone asks about software and focuses on hardware options before thinking about report structure and format, I would advise rereading Kogel's post several times until it sinks in.

There is no discussion of HI reportage like one finds in a corporate or HR environment, or really, anywhere outside the micro world of home inspections. HI's think about which device to use before thinking about what the reader needs. The discussion is and has always been completely back asswords.

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If someone asks about software and focuses on hardware options before thinking about report structure and format, I would advise rereading Kogel's post several times until it sinks in.....

Exactly. Report writing software/hardware should be founded upon a Manual of Style, s'il vous plait, for HI's. Such a manual would also provide the foundation for pre-licensing and CE courses in report writing.

Marc

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There's CE on report writing where you are? That'd be refreshing.

The best classes in my area are architectural walking tours. If I'm going to waste 4 hours if might as well be doing something interesting.

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There's CE on report writing where you are? That'd be refreshing....

No, not yet. There's a course here by that name but it's really about CYA in report writing. Nothing about format/structure.

Marc

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No, not yet. There's a course here by that name but it's really about CYA in report writing. Nothing about format/structure.

Marc

Not sure I want a licensing body to be too specific about format & structure. Most SOPs specify what must be in a report but not how to report.

As you move to a more specific format and structure, the report becomes more cookie cutter. Filling in blanks, checking boxes. The profession gets reduced to the lowest denominator. Forms do not handle variety well. Houses are diverse. Reporting needs to be flexible to accommodate all the stupid stuff people do to them.

I agree that most HI don't really understand communication and transfer of information. Sharing technical information between a competent inspector and a novice homeowner is a challenge to dumb it down enough anyone can understand but technical enough that the point comes across. Oral conversations have give and take. Written words do not. Converting oral conversation into written word that has multiple audiences is an imperfect task. The listing agent, buyers agent, buyer, tradespeople and home inspector all have different knowledge bases and to write a single document that all can understand and effectively communicate the problem is a challenging task.

The different audiences have different needs and put importance on different parts of the report. Each feels their demands are the most important. Determining what is important and what is fluff often depends on which player you are.

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You're making the mistake of conflating form and structure with cookie cutter dumbing down.

Disagree. Spent some time working with a home inspector licensing board regarding report format & structure. The real estate board lobbyist was pushing for a more consistent report format. Home inspectors were resisting more control by outsiders.

Standardization is simplification.

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Talk to the boys in Texas with their having to use the Texas Real Estate Commission mandated report. If I remember right they have to use the form but can then expand on it just about any way they want.

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Bruce is extrapolating to things I'm not talking about. Who said anything about State licensing boards or state mandated reporting? How is identifying form and structure conflated with standardization/simplification/stupid-ification? And why is simplifying report structure from the Byzantine software formats used by nearly everyone a bad thing?

HI's seem incapable of grasping concepts and ideas the rest of the world adopted decades/centuries ago.

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I can understand a reluctance to standardizing reports because in most cases where that would be done, the fellas with the authority to decide the final format don't know diddly squat how to do it.

A home inspection report is a series of findings, each of which gives the 'what is it', what does it mean' and 'what to do about it', supported by photos, citations, authoritative info or whatever you have to justify the finding.

There, I said it. That sentence, or a better version of it, is the starting point for a Manual of Style for HI reports. The Manual of Style begets the format. The format begets the report writing software.

Just don't expect many regulatory bodies, or any of them, to figure that out.

It can be done in a way that most will accept, just need the right guys in the driver's seat, the ones who know what an HI report is supposed to look like.

I didn't invent any of this. I got it from Kurt. And from Mark Cramer's sample report. They're the same.

Marc

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