There is another very important factor to add to the equation when choosing inspection companies. Although I know there will be disagreement over this, in my opinion you want to choose companies that can do the repairs themselves (Termite and Roofing). Although this practice might appear contradictory at first, and even appear to be a conflict of interest, in reality, it works very well.
The age old argument that, â€œYou donâ€™t hire a fox to guard the chicken house,â€ gets reworked in this instance and sounds like this; â€œYou donâ€™t ask an inspection company to â€˜discoverâ€™ their own work.â€ I disagree.
It might be true if you hired, â€œFlyByNight Termite Co.â€, however, the professionals we use on a daily basis can be trusted to find only what is actually there. As a licensed general contract in addition to being a licensed Realtor, I am in a unique position to evaluate reports. If I disagree with a finding, and I have done so only on a very limited number of occasions, I personally investigate the findings and then, if I still disagree, order another termite inspection from another company. At about $200.00, this is cheap insurance to make sure you donâ€™t end up paying more than you should. If the reports conflict, you meet both inspectors together at the property and donâ€™t let either of them leave until everyone is an agreement. You then get their findings in a Supplemental Inspection Report.
Here is why itâ€™s a good idea to hire companies that do their own repairs:
1. They know exactly what to fix and what NOT to touch.
2. They are licensed general contractors and do similar repairs all day long. They are typically VERY cost effective.
3. They understand the speed required while in escrow. They understand deadlines and will get the work done in time to close escrow. Unless you have your own contractor on retainer, it is almost impossible to get a regular contractor to come out, bid a job, get the required permits and complete the job on time. In addition, if a regular contractor does the work, the Termite Inspector has to come out at the exact moment all the offending material (pest or dry-rot infected) is removed, inspect the work and then allow the contractor to close everything up. Timing this correctly can be a HUGE problem.
4. In many cases, a Termite Inspector cannot guarantee that the issue has been properly resolved if the contractor finishes the job without the Inspector being on site at key points during the process.
5. If you are trying to save money by having Bob-ur-Cousin do the work, inspection companies will charge a re-inspection fee of up to $150.00 to inspect and certify work done by others. They donâ€™t charge this fee if their crews do the work because they know it will be done right.
6. They can do repairs AND treatment at the same time because they understand the chemicals and processes required. This is NOT true of normal contractors and can cause significant delays.
There are some other reasons as well, but this will do for here. There are some companies that brag that they donâ€™t do their own repairs. Quite frankly, I donâ€™t use them, because, while a deal is in escrow, I have other more important things to be worrying about than trying to micromanage termite or roof repairs. I want any repairs done right, done as cheaply as possible and done VERY quickly so we can close on time.