Jump to content

New York Draft Forces Contract Verbiage

Recommended Posts

How would you feel if you had to put the following into your contract (in no less than 6-point font)...

"Home inspectors are not permitted to make any statements or comments concerning the adequacy or soundness of the home, its structure or systems and are not permitted to provide engineering or architectural services."


Link to comment
Share on other sites

It could have been written more clearly, but I don't see the problem with it. We shouldn't be calling any structure adequate or sound; that's engineering. There's nothing in that sentence that prohibits a good HI from doing their job and accurately noting whatever defects they find in a particular property.

What'd I miss?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Jim just my opinion,but it is not so much the contract as it is the implication to a client when they see such wordage in a contract.

To them opinion means reporting on the soundness and adequacy of the home thus their new expectation is that we are useless.

With out opinion we are impotent

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Originally posted by ozofprev

the adequacy or soundness of the home, its structure or systems and are not permitted to provide engineering or architectural services."[/b]


I'm not in New York, but I think they're trying to slip something under the door there with the word "systems." Just my suspicious nature, I suppose, but it looks to me like they're counting on you to focus on the structural and completely miss the implication of "systems".

A house's "systems" include the roof systems, guttering systems, downspout systems, in-ground drainage systems, heating system, electrical system, air conditioning system, exterior cladding systems, framing systems, foundation system, landscaping and drainage systems, etc..

If that passes, every time a home inspector writes a report, he or she will, technically, be violating the law unless he or she is an engineer.

It's like here in Washington State. They've written the pest law in such a way that a home inspector can't do a home inspection to any reasonable standard without technically breaking the law if he or she doesn't hold a pest inspector's license.

The question is - will the state enforce that, or will they ignore it and wait until a home inspector screws up a structural call, or something else, and then fine the sh** out of the inspector and hang 'im out to dry?



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Sounds pretty stupid to me. "Adequate" has the same basic meaning (it's a synonym in the thesaurus) of "Satisfactory". I realize this can be construed in all sorts of ways if one wants to play w/the English language & all the various definitions & interpretations, but........

They're telling HI's that they can't tell they're customers if a structure or system is satisfactory, in my interpretation.

FTR, I never use the term *adequate* in my reports; I use the term *satisfactory* a fair amount, but overall, I try to avoid both terms, and instead, describe the condition, what it means, and what folks should do about it. ("The furnace doesn't work, this means you can't heat the house, have a shoeshine boy fix it".) That way, I avoid subjective interpretations of what I'm *trying* to say.

The intent may be to eliminate the vagueness & stupidity of all those report systems w/the checkboxes that tell folks things are OK, Not OK, satisfactory, adequate, Good, Fair, Poor, Etc....... Heck, this might even be a good thing.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

That's good feedback.

Jim: I agree that it is not within our purvue to call a structure sound. Clearly, that requires an engineer's stamp. But does this new verbiage allow me to describe a system as "inadequate", or is that a comment on its adequacy?

If I see a piece of 2X supporting a cantilevered step, can I say it's inadequate? I know you aren't a lawyer, but you could play one on TV.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Don't say it's inadequate; say it's dangerous and the step could fail catastrophically.

Personally, I'd put it in my contract, but I'd continue to report stuff in the way that I know is necessary, and if I had to use the outlaw'ed terms, I would.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On a less rhetorical note...

How would you complete the sentence?

The year is 2027. Home inspection is ____.

A.) no longer an occupation.

B.) a well-respected profession with tough entry requirements.

C.) the same as it was in 2007.

D.) a function performed by P.E.'s.

BTW, there are only answers A-D, so you can't answer

E.) I'll be in my 70's and won't care.

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...