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Inspectors (city etc) and independent.


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First of all I have really enjoyed this forum. The amassed knowledge and experience presented here is remarkable. I have a couple questions. For those of you in the front line of inspections do you see many violations overlooked by the city or township inspectors as you make our rounds and secondly how many (or what percentage of)inspectors do you know who severly skew their reporting procedures to insure continued business either from lending institutions or homeowners clients? Don't use names please.

I have been involved in single family and multifamily inspections for years and have a great deal of respect for the professional job you try to do, sometimes in the face of stiff competion from windshielders and other nerdowells.

As you may have guessed I'm developing a report and thought this forum might have some valuable input. P.S. I am not in competition with anyone in the private sector so I'm not the guy down the street..

Thanks for you time.

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I see municipal inspectors overlook major violations every day; that's because they don't even visit the site. In Chicago, a inspection means someone reviewed the paperwork to ensure that the union members got their slice.

How many inspectors skew their reports to maintain referrals from realtors? I know inspection companies that literally go into real estate offices & state categorically that "we will not kill your deals". I know realtors that stand up in the middle of 120 person offices & yell "I've got a stinker; who's got an inspector that'll make it (meaning the deal) happen?"

I have no idea of actual percentages, but it's substantial.

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I see the city inspectors miss stuff all the time.

They are not held accountable so they don't do a good job. They are a big part of the reason that I took the ICC test. Now I can quote the code to them and let them try to explain why they aren't enforcing it.

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Municipal inspections take 10 to 15 minutes max for an inspection. Sometimes these guys are given 30 or more inspections do do in an 8 hour day. It really isn't their fault that we find so many missed items. But we do find a lot. We can only imagine what is under the dry wall.

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All inspectors (home inspectors or code inspectors) miss or overlook things. Sometimes the inspector saw them but, doesn't feel they are a big deal, so he/she picks their battles with say a builder.

Private sector HI's carry personal liability, therefore most are more picky. There are tons of stuff in code books that never get enforced. In Kansas City the code people AS A WHOLE (not individual inspectors) have never enforced conditions like: "weep holes in brick walls"; "extending bathroom exhaust fans to the outside"; "requiring flashing above all wood projections on a house wall, etc"; or "grade that slopes 1/2" per foot for 10' away from the house"; or "a 6"-8" clearance to soil".

If they don't enforce it, do you think the builders are going to automatically do it??

Dan Bowers

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I do most of my inspections where no code authority exists and have seen expensive new homes with no ventilation for basement or crawl or sited below finish grade.

On two occasions I have recommended evaluation of structural concerns by an engineer and the "buyer's" realtors consulted with competing HI's to contest my findings. One of these guys is a former realtor and the other is a former inspector who is now a realtor. To say that they are in bed together is an understatement.[:-banghead]

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