4 Things to Look For in a Property Inspector

bigstock-Inspector-with-a-house-made-of-28806449If you’re considering buying or renting a property, it’s important to get a property inspection before committing so that you can be aware of any potentially expensive flaws in the property.  The information you get in an inspection report can be very valuable when it comes to deciding whether to go through with a property purchase, so choosing a good inspector is an important decision to make.  Consider these four tips when vetting potential property inspectors, and you’re much more likely to end up with a thorough, accurate inspection report that gives you all the relevant information.

  1. A property inspector should communicate.  If a property inspector is difficult to get hold of or doesn’t return your calls or e-mails, that’s a bad sign.  A professional property inspector will always find the time to communicate with you, even if he or she is very busy.  Prompt responses to phone calls and e-mails are a sign that your property inspector values your time, which means he or she is much more likely to value the time and money you are considering putting into the property.  An inspector who values your time will respect your need for an accurate inspection report.
  2. A property inspector should have good referrals.  The best way to find a good property inspector is through a friend’s recommendation: after all, personal experience is the best indicator of whether someone does a good job.  But if you can’t find a property inspector recommended by a friend or family member, you can always look online to see how other clients have found their business.  A professional property inspector will have reviews publicly available on Yelp: a business with mostly four or five star reviews is a good sign, and prompt and polite responses to less favorable reviews also indicate someone who cares about their work.
  3. A property inspector should be punctual and efficient.  A property inspector who shows up on time to appointments is someone who values your time and wants to build a good professional relationship with you.  Signs of respect like punctuality make it much more likely that a property inspector cares about doing a good job and providing you with a detailed and accurate report.  Yelp or Google reviews that show that an inspector is frequently late could also be a sign of a larger problem with the business, such as a lack of organization. 
  4.  A property inspector should be willing to answer questions.Especially if this is your first time having a property inspected, it is always acceptable to ask your inspector questions about the process before setting the appointment.  A good property inspector should be able to answer questions like how long the appointment will take, what preparations you should make, whether they will be using paper forms or an app, and what you should expect to show up on the report.  Unwillingness to answer questions might mean an inspector is likely to leave things out of a report, whereas a property inspector who is open to questions is more likely to be forthcoming during the inspection itself.
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