inspectors Blog Posts

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Whether in the field or at the office, there’s much at stake every day. Yet, many of us continue to overlook the importance of professional liability insurance.

Commonly known as errors and omissions - or E&O - insurance, these policies are designed to protect you against legal recourse should a lawsuit be filed against you. However, not all policies are created equally, and premiums are continually on the rise. So what’s the story behind these additional costs?

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

When it comes to real estate, risk is the name of the game. While it’s impossible to predict the future, there are steps you can take to prevent or defend against lawsuits brought about by errors and omissions made during the delivery of your services. Today, we’ll show you why taking a proactive approach to mitigating your risk matters so much.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

A recent case out of San Diego County underscores the importance of clearly outlining the scope of your inspection in your inspection agreement.

In that case the plaintiff, a 20-year old male college student was visiting friends, who were also college students, at a home they rented near San Diego State University. The plaintiff decided to participate in the sport of Parkour, utilizing a free-standing six foot concrete block wall located in the home’s backyard. (“Parkour” is defined as the sport of traversing environmental obstacles by running, climbing or leaping rapidly and efficiently). 

When the plaintiff attempted to pull himself onto and over the wall,...

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

This article will provide an overview of what to expect when the unthinkable happens and you have been sued. Each specific lawsuit is different, but this will provide general parameters of what you can expect and what your obligations are.

                              

Don’t Ignore the Summons

In order to initiate the lawsuit, the plaintiff will serve you with a Summons and Complaint. The Summons alerts you to the fact that you have been sued and the Complaint contains the allegations against you and any other parties named...

Monday, February 17, 2014

We recently spoke to an adjuster for a homeowner’s insurance company that is asserting a subrogation claim against the inspector's E&O policy. In our opinion the adjuster is trying to squeeze some money out of the inspector’s E&O carrier because the  insurance company the adjuster works for had to pay a claim made by the homeowner.  What makes this claim so crazy is that the inspection report in question wasn’t even written for the homeowner that reported the claim. The inspection was for an entirely different potential buyer who elected not to move forward and walked away from the deal.

Subsequently, another potential buyer appeared and was...

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

When we were younger we were all taught to look for who, what, when, where, why, and how in everything we read. By being able to answer these six questions, we were told we would better understand what we read and then be able to explain it to someone else. Today, the same is true and especially so if you are a home inspector or an appraiser. Your report needs to provide simple, clear, and direct information to your client so the client can answer all of these questions once they finish reading your report. If they cannot, you have what is called a failure to communicate....

Tuesday, December 17, 2013
Does this sound familiar? If so, I hope it’s because you watch a lot of shows like Law & Oder on television and not for any other reason. If this doesn’t sound familiar, it is one part of the Miranda warning police must give to criminal suspects before questioning them. How does that apply to you? Well, it can have equally negative consequences in a civil case (insurance claim) also. 
 
To see if you need to read any further, take this short quiz. If you answer “yes” to any one of these questions, you’d better read it all. 
     1....
Tuesday, November 26, 2013

In many complaints or claims against home inspectors the real culprit may be the seller of the subject property. Many times the seller, in an effort to get the maximum price for the property, may omit disclosure of certain defects or in some cases (gasp) may even have tried to hide a defect or two to make discovery by the inspector or buyer more difficult, if not impossible. Sometimes this happens with the help of the listing agent and one or two local contractors.

The failure to disclose or even the occasional intentional deception may not be discovered until months or years later...

Tuesday, November 19, 2013
First, it is gratifying to know you are actually reading what we write and release. We know this is true because a little over a year ago, we received very few questions about subpoenas and today, after writing a little warning piece on the now infamous FDIC subpoenas being issued to appraisers by a private law firm, we get lots of questions. In fact, we get so many we decided to put together a short follow-up piece on different kinds of subpoenas and how to handle them. These are presented in ascending order of concern with the final one being the most dangerous....
Monday, November 11, 2013

1. Ask a friend who knows nothing about a home inspection to read your pre-inspection agreement and tell you what they think you will be inspecting. You may find your pre-inspection agreement needs to be revised so your clients clearly understand what a home inspection really covers.

2. Be sure your report clearly and prominently calls out any serious problems which may be a threat to health and/or safety as well as those which will cost a lot of money to resolve. If your report doesn’t...