Are your clients alive and kicking?

Most of us can remember the movie “Vacation,” where Chevy Chase is much more interested in getting to Wally World than almost anything else along the way, as they drive across country. The scene where he spends less than 5 seconds taking in the Grand Canyon is epic.

Home inspections can be a bit like this scene from vacation.

Inspectors are so interested in getting to “Wally World” they minimize the importance of what happens along the way–ever ready to give up 5 seconds (or less) to any given scene—and then “move on.”

What “moving on” is often more about is, the inspector being concerned about moving on to the next inspection—the next stop on his way to Wally World (his own bank account). The inspector has simply lost touch with the client’s Wally World.

Without the “process” along the way, the client is left like grandma on the roof of the car and no longer with us by the time we get to our destination.

Inspectors can do so much more, but it takes time, knowledge and willingness.

When the inspector finds an issue, they can describe thoroughly what is going on, what it means to the big picture, what should be done about the problem and even who should make the repairs.

Sometimes this means the inspector will need to do research off site to provide the best level of information for the client. Researching manufacturer’s requirements, code requirements or other sources of “best practice” is often necessary with this approach.

The more experienced inspectors will even be able to describe possible options as to what those repairs might look like. This can help put things in perspective for the buyer. Otherwise the client might not grasp either how inconsequential the issue is or how serious the issue is. They may just conclude the issue is serious, triggering a flight and fight response. Knowledge is power and freedom.

This approach takes seeing their client as what is most important, so that ultimately when they do get to their destination, the client has the information and ammunition they need to proceed in a meaningful way.

And, they are still alive and kicking!


By Charles Buell, Real Estate Inspections in Seattle

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