Why does the client have to sign before the inspection? Signatures matter. They provide evidence that the signers agreed to the terms of the contract. When facing claims, signatures may be all you have to prove that your clients knew (or should have known) what was and wasn’t covered during your home inspection. Without signatures…

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Sometimes, courts can take issue with one or multiple provisions in a business contract. If the court decides that a clause in your agreement is unfair to your client or is contrary to local or federal laws, they can invalidate one or more provisions in your contract. They can even dismiss your agreement altogether. That’s…

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Recently, a kitchen fire resulted in $100,000 in damages to a home inspection client’s property. Upon investigation, the inspection client discovered that a defective electrical component in the dishwasher, which was subject to a national recall, caused the fire. A review of the state’s regulations showed that nothing requires a home inspector to document the…

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When Michelle Shishilla of Honor Services in Florida received a complaint regarding mold behind wallpaper, she knew her inspection company wasn’t at fault. They had offered mold testing, and the client had refused it. Plus, a visual, non-invasive inspection can’t find mold behind wallpaper. “In our mind, we were covered six ways from Sunday. We…

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Over a year after their inspection, one of our insured home inspectors received a letter from an attorney. The attorney alleged that the inspector was negligent in performing his clients’ home inspection and failed to identify multiple defects. The letter demanded that the inspector pay the cost of repairs to multiple areas of the property.…

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One of our home inspectors received that laundry list just six months after he performed an inspection. The claimant, who prepared his letter with quotes from the ASHI Standard of Practice and pictures taken during and after the inspection, alleged that it would cost $25,000 to repair the property’s issues and that the inspector should…

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Almost a year after performing the inspection in question, a home inspector received an attorney demand letter for $4,600. Through their lawyer, the inspector’s client argued that their home had “defective roofing which should have been detected in the home inspection.” The claimant wanted to be reimbursed for replacing their roof and repairing damage to…

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Exclusions are items of risk specifically not covered by a contract to avoid excessive liability. In pre-inspection agreements, exclusions limit or eliminate your responsibility to inspect for certain defects or examine certain systems and components. By outlining the conditions and circumstances your inspection does not cover within your agreement, you can better serve your clients…

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Your inspection scope. Merriam-Webster defines the term scope as an “intention” or “object,” meaning “the goal or end of an effort or activity.” One objective of your pre-inspection agreement is to define the scope, or purpose, of your inspection. According to Matthew Steger of WIN Home Inspection in Pennsylvania, including the scope in your agreement…

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In California court case Moreno v. Sanchez, the home buyers sued their home inspector for breach of contract, negligence and negligent misrepresentation. The buyers had discovered dust and asbestos, an inoperable drain, defective windows and wall cracking. They believed that the inspector should be responsible for the damage. The inspector’s primary defense: his inspection agreement,…

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