What I'm Seeing Now

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So, Is The Home Inspector Lazy?

So, is the home inspector lazy?

Look at this and tell me - should the home inspector remove all that stuff, or not touch it?  And if not, why not?

And if he just passes it by without touching it, is he lazy?

Examine the stuff.

Does it look like the kind of stuff that is "stored" there?

I see kitchen sort of things stored in the oven all the time.

Principally - pots, pans, and those stone pizza trays.

But this?

Is this stuff you would see typically stored in an oven?

IT IS NOT!

And I'm not touching it.

Why not?

My word is booby trap.  Yes, I suspect booby traps.

Why?  Because I have been left booby traps before!  Scoff if you want, but unfortunately it is true.

Booby traps are why I will not perform a home inspection if an agent is not present.

Once I had to bring my daughter to a home inspection.  She was about four.  The agent brought her daughter too.  Together they sat at the kitchen table, in booster chairs we both brought, and ate, played puzzles, and had a great time.  In the basement the agent, buyers and I all saw spread out and broken toys in the basement.  That night I got a call from the agent saying that the seller heard I had brought my daughter and said she broke and stole toys from the basement.  Right...  The agent was able to say that was not true.  THE HOME INSPECTOR CANNOT PROVE A NEGATIVE.

Another time the agent, and buyers, saw me turn the knob of a washing machine and saw it come off in my hand.  I reported that the knob was broken and we were unable to test the washing machine.  A couple of days later I got a bill in the mail for "Washing Machine Repairs."  A company, hand-written on an invoice, "billed" $800 for the washing machine knob repair.  Right...  At that time $800 was about what it cost to buy a new washer and dryer.  The agent was able to say I had not broken it.  And to back off his phony bill or he would be sued for fraud.  THE HOME INSPECTOR CANNOT PROVE A NEGATIVE.

You bet I could go on. 

So, is there a booby trap hidden in that oven up there?

I don't know and don't care.  I'm not touching it.  There could be something fragile in there that might break.  Or the oven is broken and upon removing the "stuff" the seller can claim the home inspector broke it.  The sellers will have to prove that the oven works. 

THIS HOME INSPECTOR IS BETTING THE OVEN DOES NOT WORK, AND IT'S A SET UP.

So, is the home inspector lazy?

My recommendation:  houses should be left by the seller in a condition to inspect.  Everything should be ready.  Don't even think about booby traps.  Aside from being exceptionally low brow, and dishonest, a possible booby trap makes this home inspector suspect that other things are hidden.  The antenna go up!  And I know lots of tricks that sellers pull and ways to reveal them...

 

 

 

 

Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC  

Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.

Office (703) 330-6388   Cell (703) 585-7560

www.jaymarinspect.com


Comment balloon 18 commentsJay Markanich • August 11 2015 04:05AM

Comments

WoW....Jay,  this is scarry.   Thanks for sharing with us in AR Land.

Posted by Ronald DiLalla, No. Orange Cty Real Estate (Century 21 Discovery DRE 01813824) over 3 years ago

Good morning Jay,

I have heard agents tell their sellers if you don't have time to clean stuff it in the different appliances! I think we have seen a few of these at showings or inspections.

Make yourself a great day.

Posted by Raymond E. Camp, Licensed Real Estate Salesperson Greater Rochester (Howard Hanna Real Estate Services) over 3 years ago

Ron - it's an easy one to side step.  Make the seller responsible!

Raymond - not the best policy.  Yes, they are out there.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 3 years ago

Jay Markanich Whan these sorts of issues are encountered, if I was the buyer, I would have to think twice about proceeding wiht the purchase. If the seller balks, force them to pay you to re-inspect.

Posted by Sandy Padula and Norm Padula, JD, GRI, Presence, Persistence & Perseverance (Realty National) over 3 years ago

S&N - I think the seller should invite me over for cookies or a nice pie.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 3 years ago

Good morning Jay. Scary stuff and I understand your position.

Posted by Sheila Anderson, The Real Estate Whisperer Who Listens 732-715-1133 (Referral Group Incorporated) over 3 years ago

Hi Jay.  I don't think my inspectors would touch that either.  I do take photos and/or videos of anything suspicious, so if there is ever a question I have it documented. 

Posted by Roy Barker (Dockside Realty, Inc.) over 3 years ago

Most people do Sheila.

Roy - photos don't lie!  Unless one is really good at photo shopping!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 3 years ago

OMG that is crazy that people would do that, but yes, I can see it happening. sad, very sad.

Posted by Debbie Gartner, The Flooring Girl & Blog Stylist -Dynamo Marketers (The Flooring Girl) over 3 years ago

I actually see it a lot Debbie.  Thought it might be time for a post!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 3 years ago

I don't blame you for not digging in Jay, this is not ready for inspection.

Posted by Tom Arstingstall, General Contractor, Dry Rot, Water Damage Sacramento, El Dorado County - (916) 765-5366, General Contractor, Dry Rot and Water Damage (Dry Rot and Water Damage www.tromlerconstruction.com Mobile - 916-765-5366) over 3 years ago

I will go out on a limb and say the seller was lazy, or drunk... that is not a clothes washer!

Sadly, we must document everything. I take pictures I know I won't use in my report for just such things... document, document, document!

Posted by Fred Hernden, CMI, Albuquerque area Master Inspector (Superior Home Inspections - Greater Albuquerque Area) over 3 years ago

Jay, I have seen things stuffed in funny places before, but this is a new one on me. If I were the buyer this would give me pause on the whole home. 

Posted by Tom Bailey (Margaret Rudd & Associates Inc.) over 3 years ago

Tom - I have been called lazy before for not doing something like this.  Who cares?

Fred - I have put filter screens in the dishwasher before, but never in the oven!

This surely is stuffed Tom.  And it gives me pause too!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 3 years ago

I read a very good post recently about getting your home ready for inspection. I don't remember who wrote it - might even have been you!

The post stressed that inspectors will not move things, so the homeowner needs to provide access. It listed many areas I hadn't thought about - such as removing "stuff" from the top of the toilet tank, making sure the dishwasher was empty, etc. 

Posted by Marte Cliff, Your real estate writer (Marte Cliff Copywriting) over 3 years ago

It may have been me Marte.  I've written one like that - and the one you read may have been someone else.  But either way, we do need access!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 3 years ago

Good morning Jay.  I would say the inspector is a cautious man and has learned from experience.

Posted by James Dray, Exceptional Agents, Outstanding Results (Fathom Realty AR LLC) over 3 years ago

Experience is a cruel but effective teacher, James!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 3 years ago

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