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Temporary repairs and best practice

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On occasion a deficiency lends its self to an easy temporary fix which would bring its condition back to adequate. I am tempted to offer both to the client this and the best practice. But if I do that the selling side seeing the report like they commonly do will only agree to the cheapo repair that brings it back to adequate.

I want to give the client options until he's prepared to fix it right but I believe in fact I know in the negotiation the seller or seller zoid will counter with the lesser.

I know, I know Mike you have said stop given a shit about what the sellers going to say and tell the client the best practice.

But is only best practice the best thing for the client? Do you tell the client best practice and maybe in some cases lessor options until he can get around to doing it right or is it best just to preach best practice only so as never to be misunderstood?

Chris, Oregon

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I'll say it again,

People don't call us up and say, "Hi, I'm looking for a home inspector who will babysit me through the rest of this transaction," they say, "I'm looking for a home inspector who will give me a thorough and accurate report about the condition of this home I intend to buy."

Inspect, explain the ramifications to the client, document it in the report, turn the report over to the client and then disengage!

OT - OF!!!


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First I would not be telling folks how to repair anything, short of "replace all rotting wood".

IMO, all we should be doing is to report what is wrong with the item and that it needs to be "properly" repaired or replaced. If you get into designing repairs that practice will eventually come back to haunt you. With many issues the proper repair is not known until the damaged item is removed. A good example would be a loose toilet. It could be as simple as it needing a new gasket or more complicated as it could have a cracked flange or who knows what until it is pulled.

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Most clients expect you to be able to answer every question, and it's easy to start thinking that you can. Unfortunately, you can't.

Specifying repairs is all risk and no reward. I understand that you are only trying to be helpful and provide a better value to your clients, but if you allow yourself to be dragged into that decision making process, you will eventually regret it.

Mike and Scott have been doing this a long time. Listen to them. Discover, document, then disengage. That's your job. Empowered by the information you give them, your client's job is to choose their own path.

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I am sorry, I know I keep beating this dam thing to death but somthing here is just not making sense.

If the inspection service stops at an opinion of the condition of the item of inspection then why make an individual recommendation of repair at all?

Why not just a general one like "When making repairs be sure to have them properly and correctly made per best practice, MII's and regulations that exist at the present time? In fact hire a construction consultant if needs be to analyze all of the conditions found and rationalize their significance, design repairs, make repair options and provide further management and consulting as needed to help you (the client).

I swear it appears that that is a void in this whole home buying process that leaves everybody unhappy.

It makes perfect sense that the HI should only preach best practice solutions and stay out of any further consulting as part of the "inspection service".

In light of whats been said in my repeated attempts to understand this is that my interpretation now of the ASHI and Oregon SOP's literally means, indicate that the deficient item of inspection in your opinion deserves one of more of the following - repair, monitoring or further evaluation.

Going deeper into and expounding on any of these three indicators is not required and falls in the domain of a consulting service.

Right? or do I still got it wrong?

Chris, Oregon

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We all have to learn, sometimes it is by a mistake. Learn from what other have done, they have already cleared the road from trees and rocks. So all you have to do is avoid the potholes.

Think about this: Do you know how to repair every, and I mean every component of a single family home. From blocked capillary tubes in an evaporator coil to missing squash blocks. We have so so many items that we have to know about, it is just about impossible to know every conceivable repair in a home.

If you tell a client how to repair one item but not the next, this allows for some doubt in your knowledge and ability.

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