Is your Home Inspector offering one of those money back guarantees?

Home Inspectors are at it again advertising on their WEB sites “Your home inspection backed by a 200% guarantee” or some other money back guarantee such as this.  What you need to know about these guarantees.

[tab: Is It Real?]

Home Inspectors these days seem to be getting more and more desperate to get your business and try to limit their liability in the process!  Lately I have been seeing more and more money back guarantees intended to lure you in.  Here are some of the headlines on these WEB sites.

“Home Inspection Backed By A 200% Guarantee”

“Exclusive Limited Inspection Guarantee”

“200% Home Buyer Home Inspection Guarantee”

Every one of these supposed guarantees offers you your home inspection fee refunded with many requirements and limitations to qualify for the refund.  Here is a list of just some of these requirements and limitations.

  • You must be personally present for the entire inspection.  That means if the Inspector makes it there before you do then technically you don’t qualify for the refund.  Or maybe you just can’t be there for the entire inspection due to family or work requirements.  Technically you don’t qualify.  Or how about this, you get hung up in traffic and miss the first hour of the inspection.  Well guess what?  Technically you don’t qualify for the refund.
  • The refund only includes the basic home inspection fee and does not include ancillary services or additional fees.  So watch your contract, if they have one, very closely.  If your inspection fee has a base price and is then added to for a pool inspection, pier & beam crawl, termite inspection, etc., then those additional fees are probably not included in the refund.
  • The guarantee is only available if you have another Home Inspector perform a second inspection on the same home.  Many times there are additional stipulations about the Home Inspector that can be used.
    • The payment to the other Home Inspector is only up to the amount of the fee this Home Inspector charged you.  What you are not aware of is that the Home Inspector giving you that guarantee is most likely a cheap Home Inspector and you won’t find another Home Inspector willing to inspect that home for that low amount.
    • The other Home Inspector has to have specific qualifications that have nothing to do with your home inspection, and it is likely that most Home Inspectors don’t even have.
    • The Home Inspector must belong to a non-existent Home Inspector association or one whose membership is so small that there are no others in your area, or no others you would be comfortable using.  Yes that is actually a requirement on one local Home Inspectors guarantee page.
  • You have to voice your objection at the home once  the inspection is completed, and you must sign all kinds of waivers and agreements.  That’s another one I read on a local Home Inspectors site.  Think about this one for a minute.  When you leave a home inspection your head is going to be swimming with the details and an hour, or even the end of the day, goes very fast.  You think you received a good home inspection until you move into the home and find all of the things wrong that the “Guaranteed” Home Inspector missed.  Where is the Home Inspector and their guarantee then?
  • Some require that you have to voice your concern and displeasure before the report is written.  See the item I just noted above.  Add to this if the Home Inspector is performing on site report generation.  Now you have to make a decision real quick before the Inspector creates that report and hands it to you or the guarantee ends.

The list of requirements and limitations goes on and on.  What is more important though is the guarantee and its terms are rarely even spelled out in any home inspection contract, if you were even provided or signed one?  It does not matter what is on a Home Inspector’s WEB site when it comes time to chase them down for a poor job.  What matters is what is in the home inspection contract and that guarantee release form you signed if you take them up on it.  If you did not sign a contract that is even worse yet.  No contract means you have nothing to show for what the Home Inspector promised.

I have heard a term used for these guarantees which is “A tail light guarantee”.  What that means is the Inspector only guarantees their work until you can no longer see their tail lights as they drive away with your payment check!  So read your contract carefully and make sure there are NO stipulations in it to receive your money back if the Home Inspector is advertising a money back guarantee.  Also make sure you obtain a copy of any release form and terms for this guarantee before you hire the Home Inspector.  Read that release form closely since it is typically written to prevent you from ever coming after that Home Inspector if they did cause issues with your purchase.

Any honest Home Inspector that wants to fully guarantee their work will happily refund your money if you are not satisfied with their service or report.  All of these “200% Money Back Guarantee” and other type advertisements are nothing more than hype to get your business and your money!  Only you can protect yourself from these tactics so be careful what you sign and who you choose to perform your home inspection.

[tab: Links and References]

PS Inspection & Property Services LLC is a full service home inspection and light commercial inspection company servicing the entire Dallas and Fort Worth, Texas metroplex as well as all areas around them.  If you are located outside of these areas we can still help service your needs so call us to see how we can help.  We strive to for the satisfaction of our customers in everything we do.  Our services offerings include:

Buyer home inspections
New Home Warranty Inspections
New Home Draw Inspections
Home Maintenance Inspections
Home Remodeling Inspections
Investor Inspections
Rental And Renter Inspections
Infrared Thermal Imaging Inspections
Whole Inspections Or Inspections Customized To Your Needs

If you have an inspection need we can customize an inspection for it.  Please visit our main site at PS Inspection & Property Service LLC.

This entry was posted in Consumer Information & Protection, Home Buying and Selling Tips. Bookmark the permalink.

Comments are closed.