A Home Inspector's Day
What does a home inspector do all day?
A typical home inspector spends his or her day inspecting homes for buyers, writing reports, speaking with prospective clients, and marketing to consumers or real estate agents. Let's look at a typical home inspection: A client or real estate agent calls and books an inspection. In many cases, the client has bought the home conditional on the results of a home inspection. When the inspection is booked, the fee will have been set ($250 to $500 is common). The inspector may have sent the contract to the client by e-mail or fax detailing the scope of work, often defined by the ASHI Standards of Practice. Most inspectors invite the client to attend the inspection.
When the inspector and client arrive at the inspection the contract is signed (if this has not been done earlier by fax or e-mail). The inspector explains the process and begins the inspection. An inspection may last from two to three hours under normal circumstances. The inspector looks at the roof and the building exterior, including the garage. Inspectors will explain the findings to the client as they go, describing the building condition and any improvements that may be recommended. The inspection continues inside the home and includes any basement or crawlspace, the living spaces, and any accessible attic or roof spaces. Inspectors frequently offer tips for operating and maintaining the home as they go, (e.g. explaining how to turn off water and power in an emergency, how and when to change furnace filters, etc.).
At the end of the inspection, the inspector and client review the findings. Some inspectors prepare and deliver their written report on site, while other inspectors write the report, based on their field notes, after the inspection. The inspection report is delivered quickly to the client, often within 24 hours, because the real estate transaction hangs in the balance. The client often pays the inspection fee onsite, and it is not unusual for the client to say something like, "That is the best money that I have ever spent."
Most inspectors perform two to three inspections in a day. The inspector keeps a copy of the report on file and processes the inspection fee payment, back at the office.