What Part Of The House Don’t You Want Me To Inspect?

By
Home Inspector with Complete Home Inspections, Inc.

I got a call from a real estate agent, whom I did not know, over the weekend asking if we can do an inspection for her clients next week. I said sure, I’m booked for the next few days and the earliest available would be Wednesday afternoon. After going through some chit chat about how several agents in her office have used this company and think that we do a great job etc, we got on to the price of the inspection.

I gave her the price; she thought a few seconds and asked if I give discounts? I chuckled and said, “Yes! What part of the house don’t you want us to inspect, the attic, crawlspace, how about the framing?”

She was astonished and said, “Well, we would want you to inspect the whole house!”

I politely told her that to inspect the whole house was X number of dollars. She was very persistent. “My clients are first time home buyers and they are tight on cash.”

My thought immediately was either this person is trying to “Who Do” me or the clients are buying too much house. If they are that tight on cash, they do not need to be buying that property, maybe they need to purchase something that would fit their budget and therefore the home inspection. I told the agent the same.

Her reply was that “ON PAPER” they can afford the house and the payments. They need some assistance on the price of the home inspection.

ON PAPER? Just what the heck does that mean?

In all sincerity, I told the agent, “As a house warming gift, why don’t you have the client pay X amount of dollars and you make up the rest? Wouldn’t that be a great gift for your clients?

She hung up on me.

I have to ask the real estate community a question. If you are not willing to cut your commission, then why ask a home inspector or any other service provider to cut the price of their service? Really, will 25 – 50 bucks off the price of the home inspection or any other service provided really cause “hardship” on your clients? If so, I think that you need to look within. Are you really providing the service your clients need or are you looking out for #1 – You!

Home inspectors and other service providers across the country take on a huge liability when inspecting a home or doing what they do during a property transaction. Any omission or error can cost them hundreds or even thousands of dollars. Home inspectors and other providers are being sued at an alarming rate. Far too often, real estate agents look at service providers as a commodity rather than being an asset. The good service providers work hard for you and your client. Are we not worth our money too? What we charge is fair and equitable in our market area. Why can’t we just play well together?

Have you joined my birthday alarm? It is fast painless and the best part of all, you will be helping me out.

Thanks, Michael

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Complete Home Inspections, Brentwood TN 615.661.0297
 

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Comments 52 New Comment

Anonymous #49
Anonymous
Anonymous

Michael-- Great post...

Paula / Kevin--let's face it the agent was just plain rude... if she really was looking out for her clients she could have easily kicked in $25-$50 bucks to reduce the inspection. Her attitude was "it's fine if it comes out of your pocket, but don't dip in mine". She probably would have spent this much on a house warming gift anyway... 

However, I do agree Kevin with one thing, though. There is always a way to phrase a request in a more apealling way so that everyone can win. But it does not sound like she did that...

May 13, 2008 12:50 AM
Rainmaker
652,246
Bob & Carolin Benjamin
East Phoenix Arizona Homes
Benjamin Realty LLC

That sounds like a really rude agent. Sounds like you did the right thing. She could have kicked in the $50 bucks or whatever it was if these over extended clients were unwiling or unable to afford that. But seriously you are right. If this small amount made different in what the client could afford, then they were way over extended.

May 13, 2008 01:19 AM
Rainer
139,351
Harold "Hal" Place
A1 Connection Realty, Inc.

Morning Michael,

Another great post! But, really, man, I can't understand why you wouldn't help those kids out! LOL

I know your feeling, when I owned the Home Improvement business many an agent would want me to cut my price because their client was on a limited budget. I would reply, "so am I, my suppliers wond cut their prices, my hired help won't take a pay cut nor will my insurance company of the gasoline company reduce their rates and prices.

Sometimes I got the job other times I did not. Our prices were in line, fair and reasonable for the quality of workmanship. I slept well every night, as I am sure you do!

Have a great day.

May 14, 2008 07:48 AM
Ambassador
248,443
Melissa Grant
The Law of Attraction In Life & Business
A Serendipity World

Micheal, you said : I have to ask the real estate community a question. If you are not willing to cut your commission, then why ask a home inspector or any other service provider to cut the price of their service?

A good compromise would have been you and I both split the extra $50 or so for the clients. Besides, if I am cutting mine I would expect you to cut yours as well....

HOWEVER, I STRONGLY believe if the client wishes to have a home inspection they need to have the money to pay for it...period !!!!!!!!! You cannot go and buy a house and expect everyone to pay for you...if they can't come up with $300 for a home inspection how on earth does anyone expect them to pay that $500 ( or more ) mortgage ! And everyone wonders why we are in the market we are in ! Duh !!!!!!!!

FYI - I don't cut my commission unless there is no other option and I have never asked a Home Inspector etc to cut his fee's...just bad practice I believe ~!

May 16, 2008 06:26 AM
Rainer
534
Hector Pinto
At Home Inspections

That;s a typical Realtor-for you---they want everyone to discount their commsions but when it comes to their own---the get insultated!

August 01, 2008 01:19 AM
Ambassador
1,379,785

Michael Thornton

Home Inspector - Nashville, TN area - 615.661.0297
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