What I'm Seeing Now

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From One Roof To Another...

A while ago, I arrived at a house to do a home inspection.  I habitually get to home inspections early to get various things done before others arrive.  The buyer's realtor knew that, she knows me too well, and she told the listing agent.  I was met early by both realtors, buyer and seller.  They told me that the seller was a single, very senior, recently-widowed woman who desperately needed to sell the house for financial reasons.  They outlined all that had been done to the house to ready it for sale.  And, oh, that there was a new, one-year old roof.

The message was not too subtle.  At the time I thought they were trying to sway my opinion before I had one.

Feeling undue pressure, I was not happy about it then, but I was happy to hear yesterday of the end result.  I had an inspection yesterday with the selling agent, who brought me up to speed.

The roof was a shambles.  From the street I could see various downward bulges.  The roof flashing had not been replaced and was coming loose.  The shingles were curling.  The plumbing penetration sleeves had not been replaced.  I was not impressed from the outside.  All I could think was uh-ohhhh.

The interior was beautiful.  It reflected the beauty of the seller, whom I adored immediately.

The roof was a mess.  The bulges were caused by two things - broken sheathing and the lack of clips between the panels.  Two trusses were cracked.  I found five leaks, particularly near the chimney.  The bath vent had been disconnected and was blowing humid air onto the roof, causing "evidence" of mold.  There was no FRT plywood.  Well, there were no stamps indicating that it was FRT.  It had the same general appearance as  regular roof sheathing.  Some FRT plywood has noticeable coloring, and this did not.  I thought it was not FRT.

I told the group of what I found.  The seller had the receipt from the "roofer."  It clearly stated "new FRT plywood," "new plumbing penetration sleeves," "new flashing," "top-grade sheathing," (it was 17/32" oriented strand board, not top grade to be sure), yadda, yadda.  I thought it a bit pricey too, but that is opinion. 

She called the roofer.  "He is a home inspector and he is supposed to find problems.  He doesn't know what he's talking about.  Of course it's FRT."

Houston, we have a problem.

You have to understand - I felt HORRIBLE.  But what to do?  When I left, everyone there was distraught.  So was I.

Well, mystery of mysteries, someone got involved.  Anonymously, but involved.  Is that outside the purview of a home inspector?  YES, yes it is!  He must not have done it as a home inspector.   That someone must have done it as a friend. 

Somehow three roofing companies and a county inspector contacted the surprised seller.  Out of the blue!  They all did so with no strings attached.  They made severe, um, recommendations to the previous roofer.  It seems the home inspector did know what he was talking about after all...

The end result - the seller got a newly installed roof, top to bottom, with a very interested county inspector making sure it was done correctly, EVERY STEP OF THE WAY - total value $14,100.

The agent yesterday told me the whole story.  Afterward she gave me a wink and said, "Thanks for your help."

She knows me too well...

My recommendation:  Wink and thank your home inspector.  They really like that!

 

 

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 • January 21 2009 10:14AM

Comments

Jay, well done.  So it sounds like FRT is required in your area?  I have had sellers that I have felt that way about as well.  Awesome of you to go the extra mile ;)

Posted by Charles Buell, Seattle Home Inspector (Charles Buell Inspections Inc.) over 9 years ago

That was wonderful! It is nice to see there are people that are willing to step in and save the day!

Way to Go!

Posted by Ursula Lowther (Keller Williams Realty First Atlanta) over 9 years ago

wow, you are good! and a good home inspector is a gem to be treasured.

Posted by Crystal Ledbetter (Texas Home Group) over 9 years ago

Charles - it is!  When one goes the extra mile one becomes the master and not the slave.  I read that somewhere, let's see...  where was that...?

Ursula - that "someone" must have been really concerned.

Crystal - me?  Did I say me?  It is a true story too...

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 9 years ago

What a great story...if it's true that what goes around, comes around (and I believe it is), you have a lot of good karma coming your way.

Posted by Susan Haughton, Susan & Mindy Team...Honesty. Integrity. Results. (Long and Foster REALTORS (703) 470-4545) over 9 years ago

Susan - is that like feng shui?  I'm kidding - thanks!  {;>)

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 9 years ago

What a shame that people pay money nowadays for services that may or may not be rendered; this goes for car repairs too. I suppose it might be a good idea to have a trusted home inspector examine the quality of work after the project is finished. Even better, we should tell the service provider that we plan on having it inspected afterward; and, this may cause them to think twice about cheating people.

Notwithstanding, there are genuine people who honor their word, but they are getting harder to find.

Posted by Steve Graham (Inactive) over 9 years ago

Steve - in the early 80's I profited greatly by the FRT debacle.  Many relo companies employed me to check roofs after the FRT was replaced.  Not many people were doing inspections in that era, and my name really got around.  I began doing them for entire townhouse communities too.  The fact that the HOA was able to say to roofers that an inspector would be by after the fact I think helped a lot.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 9 years ago

Jay, Do you find it hard to walk through doorways. That halo has got to get in the way. A great feel good story. Nice to know there are still people around who care.

Posted by James Quarello, Connecticut Home Inspector (JRV Home Inspection Services, LLC) over 9 years ago

James - no halo, my friend.  I was raised by my elderly grandmother (lived to nearly 100) and have a soft spot for cute senior chicks...

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 9 years ago

Jay you are too funny. What age bracket do you find the "hottest"?

Posted by James Quarello, Connecticut Home Inspector (JRV Home Inspection Services, LLC) over 9 years ago

James - Well, no age bracket really.  I tend toward the smart and sweet, feisty and fun, polite and plump, gray and good, whimsical and wise, sugar and spice hotties, especially if they have cookies or brownies that just happen to be laying around with a note that says, "Enjoy."

I arrived early at an inspection and the seller, very elderly, met me at the door.  I was the first to arrive. She let me in, but I could tell she was apprehensive not knowing me from Adam.  She made conversation and puttered about to convince me that she was a nice person and that seemed to make her feel more at ease.  Suddenly she asked me if I needed to inspect her closet. 

"Well, sure, I will inspect all your closets." 

"What could you possibly do in there - do you take much time?" 

"No, not really ... well ... not unless your clothes fit me." 

Her eyes opened real wide, shocked, then she shook her finger at me and, big grin, said, "I LIKE YOU!" 

She was my good bud for the rest of my visit.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 9 years ago

You know I do the same thing, kid around to try and put people at ease. We inspectors have a way of getting people on edge. You can see it in the way people act when you come to the door. We're not bad guys, but they need to know that. Nothing like humor to lighten the mood.

Posted by James Quarello, Connecticut Home Inspector (JRV Home Inspection Services, LLC) over 9 years ago

Jay,

 

It is disconcerting when you get a list of instructions, pre-inspection, as to what is not wrong.

Posted by Steven L. Smith, Bellingham WA Home Inspector (King of the House Home Inspection, Inc.) over 9 years ago

James - if I get somewhere very early and the sellers have not left yet, sometimes I pass the house and go up the street to read until they leave.  My presence in front of the house seems to intimidate them...

Steven - I am always ill at ease when either realtor starts telling me about the house.  In this case it was stereo!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 9 years ago

Great story Jay.  The things those home inspectors wont do to create harmony.

Posted by Jack Gilleland (Home Inspection and Investor Services, Clayton) over 9 years ago

Bravo Jay. My hat is off to you sir. Not just for doing a great job as an inspector, but for being a great neighbor and taking care of those that can't for themselves. Thank you.

Posted by Ian Niquette (Square One Home Inspection) over 9 years ago

Jack - thanks, but as I said earlier, I was raised by my grandmother and have a soft spot for the elderly.  No one else had any ideas, I could tell whille there.

Ian - thank you!  And who is my neighbor?

I amd just kidding - I am quite aware...

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 9 years ago

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