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If you wrote the laws.


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All in good fun, cause we all know it will never happen. But.... If you where king what would you change about the law pertaining to home inspections?

I'm sure you've got some stories where a well placed law would have help everyone involved (client, inspector, etc..).

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1) Participation in a 16 hour session on homebuying is required before any buyer can be approved for a home mortgage.

2) Instruction time provided during said session to be equally divided among practitioners of the following four professions:

a) Mortgage Lenders

b) Realtors

c) Home Inspectors

d) Other

3) Dual representation of 2 or more of the above professions by a single individual or entity is strictly prohibited.

4) Each presentation on an industry must meet the approval of the government body or agency charged with regulating that industry.

Marc

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Marc,

In many parts of the country, those requirements are standard for dozens of "programs".

I have worked with and against regulation for nearly twenty years and have had opportunity to significantly influence "laws". It ain't all fun and games and it certainly is hard work. You make lots of enemies and very few friends. At this stage of my life, I can't get too excited about regulation.

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There should be an Affidavit of Merit required before a licensed home inspector can be sued. For those of you that do not know what this means it requires another licensed home inspector to review the facts of the case and determine that there is any merit to a claim.

I also think that the loser should pay the winner's legal expenses. This will curtail a lot of frivilous litigation.

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If they bring a lawsuit on behalf of a client's frivolous claim and lose, lawyers should have to pay 2/3 of the award they were seeking to the person they'd tried to sue and and their a-hole clients should be responsible for the other 1/3. Frivolous lawsuits would disappear overnight.

Wanna be a home inspector? NO GRANDFATHERING!!! Apply to a college and spend the first year learning basic construction, light engineering principles and business. The second year you get into the weeds with home inspections. After the two years of college your awarded a degree as a building technologist. After that, you spend a year as an intern with an established home inspection firm before you can take a tough board exam - not a weenie test like the NHIE - and can be awarded a PHI (Professional Home Inspector) certificate. All states would toss out all existing qualification requirements within their current laws and have only one home inspectors qualification requirement - a PHI certificate. Every state would have a law requiring the PHI in order to inspect homes.

Anyone teaching in home inspections would need to have been a practicing home inspector for at least ten years before they could be employed teaching home inspections and would not be permitted to teach the first year of any college curriculum in home inspection unless they held degrees in one of the disciplines taught as well as a teaching certificate.

Real estate professionals would not be permitted to counsel clients about inspections beyond informing them that they need to get a home inspection. All home sales contracts would state that the buyer has two weeks minimum within which to get the inspection completed - this could not be voluntarily waived - and ten days after the inspection has been completed to confer with other professionals before they must respond to the seller in writing.

Inspection fees would be tied to the cost of the house country-wide and be based on a percentage with 1/5 of 1% of the cost of the house being the minimum fee allowed by law.

Whitewashing an inspection report would be a jailable offense for an inspector. Trying to influence the outcome of an inspection or inspection report, in order to push a sale through, would be a jailable offense for a realtor. Trying to conceal the true condition of a home or withholding critical information about a house would be a jailable offense for a seller. No first offense probation or in-house arrest - they go in. Once convicted, inspectors are not allowed to hold an inspector's certificate and realtors aren't allowed to hold a realtor's license again....ever.

All insurance companies providing E & O or PL to any profession would be required to provide the same to home inspectors or would not be allowed to offer it to anyone. All insurance companies representing home inspectors must defend those inspectors vigorously and in good faith against lawsuits - no settling out-of-court for convenience sake. Judges would only be allowed to award punitive damages where they can prove collusion or intentional malfeasance on the part of inspectors - honest mistakes net the whining buyer only what it costs to make the house livable and not a penny more.

Anyone caught improperly installing radon mitigation systems and thus putting homeowners' lives at risk would have his b***s crushed with vise grips. (Well, close your mouth.......you asked.)

ONE TEAM - ONE FIGHT!!!

Mike

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Sounds pretty good Mike, except that you need to take a remedial math class. 1/5 of 1% of the median home price here isn't enough to bother picking up my tools. At that minimum, my two closest competitors could reduce their already absurdly low fees and under cut me by half instead of just a third. You've just empowered the cheap guy in town.[:-dev3]

Tom

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All realtors shall be required to lower their gaze and back away slowly upon the arrival of the home inspector.

Sea chanty-ing, Celtic knotting, 3 penny jigging Irishmen shall be given international jurisprudential advisory powers on all matters relating to home inspection.

Upstate laconic muni guys shall be provided riding crops for the purpose of smacking the lips of backtalking realtors.

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Anyone caught improperly installing radon mitigation systems and thus putting homeowners' lives at risk would have his b***s crushed with vise grips. (Well, close your mouth.......you asked.)

ONE TEAM - ONE FIGHT!!!

Mike

Hmmm,

I wonder what A-hole would put their client at risk?

Just asking...

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Sounds pretty good Mike, except that you need to take a remedial math class. 1/5 of 1% of the median home price here isn't enough to bother picking up my tools. At that minimum, my two closest competitors could reduce their already absurdly low fees and under cut me by half instead of just a third. You've just empowered the cheap guy in town.[:-dev3]

Tom

1% of $200,000 is $2,000. 1/5 of $2,000 is $400.00. That's typical of what I charge in my part of the country for about a 2,500 SF home on a slab.

Marc

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Sounds pretty good Mike, except that you need to take a remedial math class. 1/5 of 1% of the median home price here isn't enough to bother picking up my tools. At that minimum, my two closest competitors could reduce their already absurdly low fees and under cut me by half instead of just a third. You've just empowered the cheap guy in town.[:-dev3]

Tom

What you're tellilng me is that real estate is being sold at bargain basement prices where you are. I suppose, since I'd be King and I'd put all anti-trust lawyers under the foundation of the nearest bridge, a bare minimum price could be set for all home inspections and then after a certain price point that would exceed that minimum using the formula the minimum would increase along with the price.

All hail!

ONE TEAM - ONE FIGHT!!!

Mike

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There's lots of parts of the country outside the urban centers where $75,000-100,000 can buy you a decent little house on a decent piece of dirt.

That's what a fancy parking space costs downtown.

Rural, you got a lot of options for $100,000. $250,000 gets you a house with a trout pond.

Too bad I like living in a City nowadays.......

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I just looked at a house on an acre for $18,000. It's what the realtor called a "handyman special". I was surprised it wasn't condemned. Huge though. 2 stories, partially finished attic, and a basement. Roughly 4,000 square feet. Built in 1898.

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All in good fun, cause we all know it will never happen. But.... If you where king what would you change about the law pertaining to home inspections?

I'm sure you've got some stories where a well placed law would have help everyone involved (client, inspector, etc..).

I think that you could clear up a whole lot of problems on a whole lot of levels with one simple rule.

Real estate agents shouldn't be paid by commission. They should charge by the hour, as other professionals do.

- Jim Katen, Oregon

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If they bring a lawsuit on behalf of a client's frivolous claim and lose, lawyers should have to pay 2/3 of the award they were seeking to the person they'd tried to sue and and their a-hole clients should be responsible for the other 1/3. Frivolous lawsuits would disappear overnight.

Wanna be a home inspector? NO GRANDFATHERING!!! Apply to a college and spend the first year learning basic construction, light engineering principles and business. The second year you get into the weeds with home inspections. After the two years of college your awarded a degree as a building technologist. After that, you spend a year as an intern with an established home inspection firm before you can take a tough board exam - not a weenie test like the NHIE - and can be awarded a PHI (Professional Home Inspector) certificate. All states would toss out all existing qualification requirements within their current laws and have only one home inspectors qualification requirement - a PHI certificate. Every state would have a law requiring the PHI in order to inspect homes.

Anyone teaching in home inspections would need to have been a practicing home inspector for at least ten years before they could be employed teaching home inspections and would not be permitted to teach the first year of any college curriculum in home inspection unless they held degrees in one of the disciplines taught as well as a teaching certificate.

Real estate professionals would not be permitted to counsel clients about inspections beyond informing them that they need to get a home inspection. All home sales contracts would state that the buyer has two weeks minimum within which to get the inspection completed - this could not be voluntarily waived - and ten days after the inspection has been completed to confer with other professionals before they must respond to the seller in writing.

Inspection fees would be tied to the cost of the house country-wide and be based on a percentage with 1/5 of 1% of the cost of the house being the minimum fee allowed by law.

Whitewashing an inspection report would be a jailable offense for an inspector. Trying to influence the outcome of an inspection or inspection report, in order to push a sale through, would be a jailable offense for a realtor. Trying to conceal the true condition of a home or withholding critical information about a house would be a jailable offense for a seller. No first offense probation or in-house arrest - they go in. Once convicted, inspectors are not allowed to hold an inspector's certificate and realtors aren't allowed to hold a realtor's license again....ever.

All insurance companies providing E & O or PL to any profession would be required to provide the same to home inspectors or would not be allowed to offer it to anyone. All insurance companies representing home inspectors must defend those inspectors vigorously and in good faith against lawsuits - no settling out-of-court for convenience sake. Judges would only be allowed to award punitive damages where they can prove collusion or intentional malfeasance on the part of inspectors - honest mistakes net the whining buyer only what it costs to make the house livable and not a penny more.

Anyone caught improperly installing radon mitigation systems and thus putting homeowners' lives at risk would have his b***s crushed with vise grips. (Well, close your mouth.......you asked.)

ONE TEAM - ONE FIGHT!!!

Mike

Given this a bit of thought aye?

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I just looked at a house on an acre for $18,000. It's what the realtor called a "handyman special". I was surprised it wasn't condemned. Huge though. 2 stories, partially finished attic, and a basement. Roughly 4,000 square feet. Built in 1898.

WOW! $18,000 is barely taxes in some Chicago suburbs!

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Sounds pretty good Mike, except that you need to take a remedial math class. 1/5 of 1% of the median home price here isn't enough to bother picking up my tools. At that minimum, my two closest competitors could reduce their already absurdly low fees and under cut me by half instead of just a third. You've just empowered the cheap guy in town.[:-dev3]

Tom

1% of $200,000 is $2,000. 1/5 of $2,000 is $400.00. That's typical of what I charge in my part of the country for about a 2,500 SF home on a slab.

Marc

The 200s aren't out of the question here, and there is a resort town where twice that is the norm, but,this is a rural area and the median sales price of an existing home is in the low 100s and in the little hamlet I live in it's only around 90.

Tom

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All in good fun, cause we all know it will never happen. But.... If you where king what would you change about the law pertaining to home inspections?

I'm sure you've got some stories where a well placed law would have help everyone involved (client, inspector, etc..).

I think that you could clear up a whole lot of problems on a whole lot of levels with one simple rule.

Real estate agents shouldn't be paid by commission. They should charge by the hour, as other professionals do.

- Jim Katen, Oregon

That assumes that REs are professionals. You should know better than that[:P]

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WOW! $18,000 is barely taxes in some Chicago suburbs!

There are small towns in Montana and Wyoming where you can still buy a house in town for $10,000. Small fixer uppers in the 1,000 square foot range on a 1/4 acre lot.

I have an aunt and uncle that retired to a tiny town in Wyoming. They bought a house in town for $12,000. They had to do a lot of remodeling and upgrades but now it's really nice. Has central heat and everything.

It took some adjustments, they still don't have cell phone service. They get their TV through satellite and have medium speed satellite internet service. Spend a lot of time in the outdoors. No chain restaurants or chain stores. Nearest Walmart is a 2 hour drive. Basically no jobs to speak of. Not even a movie theater within an hours drive. Small grocery store, hardware store, and a gas station in town.

Plus side is they live really comfortably on his pension. He was a Sergeant Major in the Army. He jokes that his Ford F-150 XLT 4x4 cost more than what he spent to buy and remodel his house.

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