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We won't sell additional services to our inspection clients. If requested, we can arrange termite and radon, but we don't take a cut. They pay them directly.

We do have additional services, other than inspections:

  • Litigation support/expert witness
  • Energy efficiency inspections & audits.
  • EIFS Testing
  • Consultations for many individual types of building issues
We were also going to add *Escort Service* for when the real estate bubble burst, but we haven't had a slow-down yet.
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Originally posted by Kevin A. Richardson

For a long time it has been Radon then Home Energy Tune-uP's. But since I have started offering Infrared Thermal Imaging, those two services have taken a back seat to ITI.

ITI Moisture Surveys

ITI Electrical Surveys

ITI Energy Surveys

-Kevin

Kevin, how long did it take you to regain your investment in the camera and the training?

- Jim Katen, Oregon

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Originally posted by Jim Katen

Originally posted by Kevin A. Richardson

For a long time it has been Radon then Home Energy Tune-uP's. But since I have started offering Infrared Thermal Imaging, those two services have taken a back seat to ITI.

ITI Moisture Surveys

ITI Electrical Surveys

ITI Energy Surveys

-Kevin

Kevin, how long did it take you to regain your investment in the camera and the training?

- Jim Katen, Oregon

Good question :) Actually, I haven't calculated it yet. I signed up for the "lease to own" program with Flir Direct. My payment is 121.00 a month (lease + Insurance).

The first couple of months were slow, but once I started marketing the camera (new web site) it really picked up.

I just ran a report in Quickbooks and my gross revenue for all three ITI surveys came out to be an average of 850.00 a month for the past three months.

I attended two Flir training classes, but both were free. I am still debating on spending the 1,600 on the Level I Thermography course Flir offers. They have a new IR Building Science course that I will probably take first, but it is still 1,600 bucks. I am planning on taking that course in the fall when things slow down a bit.

-Kevin

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Les, out of the times you were interviewed to determine if you would be a suitable witness for a particular case, what is the percentage of times you are actually utilized in court?

What I wonder is, I suppose that sometimes a number of witnesses are interviewed before they find one that supports the case they want to present. Does that make sense?

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no it does not make sense.

When you are qualified as an expert, you really can't care about supporting a particular view or cause of action. In Michigan, the court makes the determination wheather you are expert or not.

My particular style is the same as Jack Web on Dragnet. Figger that one out!!

I work a couple dozen files per year and have a couple that are 4-5yrs old. I have a legal background, so that helps and I really like the work. It can really rattle your confidence and you must remind yourself every day how the system works and kept it at a professional level.

If I had to do it over, I would spend more time learning to write more effectively, study grammer and psycology, and learn Spanish. I do very well when I can verbally testify.

Only 20% of files even get to deposition and abt 10% go to trial.

It ain't for the faint of heart or inspectors that think they always know everything. It is about confidence, breathing, reflecting and give your opinion.

PS: I don't do interviews!

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Originally posted by AHI

Thanks for the explanation and I didnt mean to imply anything negative. I just wanted to know how it works.

Who actually hires you? Are we talking civil lawsuit cases mainly?

I'm not Les, but: Plaintiff or defendant hires/pays the expert.

They're all civil cases as far as I know. Never heard of a building-defect criminal case. (Doesn't mean there's no such thing.)

In my experience, there are two things that the expert must be: (1) Right (2) A guy who, when he says things, people nod in agreement.

The expert is not an advocate. If he does his job right, he just tells the truth. It's pretty much a case of sitting in the chair and saying, Yes, No and I don't know.

WJ

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Originally posted by SonOfSwamp

Originally posted by AHI

Thanks for the explanation and I didnt mean to imply anything negative. I just wanted to know how it works.

Who actually hires you? Are we talking civil lawsuit cases mainly?

I'm not Les, but: Plaintiff or defendant hires/pays the expert.

They're all civil cases as far as I know. Never heard of a building-defect criminal case. (Doesn't mean there's no such thing.)

In my experience, there are two things that the expert must be: (1) Right (2) A guy who, when he says things, people nod in agreement.

The expert is not an advocate. If he does his job right, he just tells the truth. It's pretty much a case of sitting in the chair and saying, Yes, No and I don't know.

WJ

That makes sense.

How often are there cases involving HI's where there is an expert witness for each side that disagree with each other on a specific item?

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Originally posted by AHI

Originally posted by SonOfSwamp

Originally posted by AHI

Thanks for the explanation and I didnt mean to imply anything negative. I just wanted to know how it works.

Who actually hires you? Are we talking civil lawsuit cases mainly?

I'm not Les, but: Plaintiff or defendant hires/pays the expert.

They're all civil cases as far as I know. Never heard of a building-defect criminal case. (Doesn't mean there's no such thing.)

In my experience, there are two things that the expert must be: (1) Right (2) A guy who, when he says things, people nod in agreement.

The expert is not an advocate. If he does his job right, he just tells the truth. It's pretty much a case of sitting in the chair and saying, Yes, No and I don't know.

WJ

That makes sense.

How often are there cases involving HI's where there is an expert witness for each side that disagree with each other on a specific item?

You lost me there. Are you asking if there are ever "dueling HI" or "dueling expert" cases? If so, the answer is yes. If there's enough money at stake to go to deposition or trial, each side is likely to have an expert. They could agree, or they could differ. As I mentioned earlier, expert witnesses aren't advocates.

Just so you'll know: It's not unusual for an HI/expert to take on a job, read the report(s), then call the lawyer and tell him something like: "Our client screwed the pooch big time. This case looks like a loser." At that point, the expert gets paid, and the poor sumbitch who screwed the pooch just has to pay up for whatever damages he caused.

I'm sad to say that in the cases where I've been asked to read and analyze HI reports, I found that the HIs were woefully ignorant, relied on folklore, overlooked the obvious, made no sense when they wrote, failed to give adequate warning/explanation and thought Xs in checkboxes and bullshift disclaimers would make them bulletproof.

And don't you know, builders are even worse defendants than HIs.

Hope that helps,

WJ

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John,

WJ is right. Most of the EW work is not as glitzy as sitting on the witness chair. Depositions are the most fun because you are usually working with attys that want to "slice and dice" you. It is very precise work and can be exhausting.

I have read several hundred different inspection reports and have found only a handful that were quite good. That said, nearly every report has flaws and those flaws can be overlooked if the entire report conveys good info and is understood by a normal client.

I recently had a prolonged discussion about a report with several learned inspectors from across the nation. I can't tell you the specifics, but the report started out with a bunch of legal mumbo jumbo and ended with a bunch of CYA stuff and filled in the middle with a bunch of logic breakdowns. I lost that argument!

Too much drift!

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