Thursday, July 30, 2015

How much should a Home Inspection in Orlando cost?

I own First Choice Home Inspections and I get 100+ calls a week for home inspections. The first question and many times the only question the buyer asks me is "How much do you charge for a home inspection?” I do not over charge for home inspections. I am a thorough inspector and most inspections take 3 to 5 hours plus an additional 2 or 3 hours finalizing the report and marking the pictures. After the inspection I follow up with the client when they have read over the 40 to 96 page report. I sometime spend an additional hour answering any questions they may have and always let them know if they have any further questions they can always call me. 

As a reputable home inspector, I have expenses like continuing education, insurance (liability and E&O), advertising, tools, membership dues, state licensing fees and regular business expenses just to keep the doors open. My rates are reasonable and I do a complete inspections.  I know the inspectors that charge less for the inspections and I know their reputations for the work they do.  I also know the Realtor that recommend them and only them.  I know what the minimum rate I can charge for an inspection and still keep the doors open.

Every time I quote an inspection and the client says I’ll get back to you or I’m just going to check a few more places I know money is the issue and they will not schedule the appointment. I know the inspectors that are cheaper and I know they do a budget inspection in 45 min to an hour and half. A fast inspection is not a good inspection. A budget inspection is not a good inspection. If it is cheap, what is the client getting for their $199.00. Do they even bother to check if the inspector is active and licensed?  A budget inspector will often complete 3 or more inspections in a day.  When does he have time to research the building permits and history of the home? How can they possible concentrate on the inspection at hand with other inspections scheduled across town?  At First Choice, our inspectors are scheduled and perform 1 home inspection a day.  Our client is our only concern and will have our full attention.

I have relatives in other states that always call me when it comes to buying their home and the advice I always give them is check the inspector out. Check the state their state licensing, insurance, training and experience, and check with people you know for their recommendations. If the most qualified and reputable inspector charges $600, then he is the best inspector to hire. Remember $600 maybe a lot of money but it is only a small portion of a $20,000 roofing mistake not caught by the cheap inspector that did not crawl up in the attic.

Electrical junction nightmare – This junction was
 the result of handyman wiring and could
 have burned down this house.
When looking for a home inspector the last thing you should consider is the cost of the inspection.  The first thing on my mind is the safety of my family.  I do not want to be awake all night wondering if the inspector missed an electrical junction in the attic that should have been in a closed box.  All too often I run across things like the junction in the picture to the right, an exhaust fan wired into the closest wiring run.  In the picture you can note the black burn marks on the copper and the scorch marks on the sheathing and the wood.  The question you should ask yourself is would the $199.00 home inspector find this? 

In the opinion of this Home Inspector if the price is too low you must ask yourself; why?  The fee for a basic home inspection nationwide is $300 to $500 by HUD estimates in "Ten Important Questions to Ask Your Home Inspector" 2011.  The size of the home, additional components and structures, pools or spas and irrigation systems will all add to the price of the inspection.  Fees vary by region of the country significantly.  When purchasing your home, you want the best inspection at a reasonable price.  A thorough inspection will take from 3 to 5 hours to complete.  When it is your money and your family’s safety on the line you want the most meticulous inspector you can find.   

When contracting a home inspector check them out; license, insurance, professional association, and do they have complaints on file with the state regulatory agency.   Ask the important questions and if you are satisfied with the results ask the inspector for a quote. 

Frank Carr is the Owner / Inspector at First Choice Home Inspections in Deltona, FL. Formerly in the building trades, Frank’s focus is a safe home and building FCHI. 

We believe that consumers have the right to expect the highest standards of thoroughness, fairness and effectiveness from their home inspector and that is exactly what we provide.

First Choice Home Inspections
Residential Home Inspections in Central Florida
(386) 624-3893 
Website:  Http://