As we progress in development, I have been talking to as many people as I can within the home inspection industry, the real estate market and other similar industries. My realtor conversations of late have been interesting.

As you all know, a good number of realtors hate the home inspection process because it introduces risk into the deal. However, they recognize the value to the buyer. They are devoted to specific inspectors who have proven the ability to thread the needle between providing valuable information without killing the deal unnecessarily.

In a conversation I had this morning with a home inspector, he likened it to a batter with a hitting streak. He is attached to some ritual until the streak ends at which point that ritual is the problem not the solution. In a similar vein, the realtor is willing to try new inspectors or drop them when their streak ends.

The realtor focuses on the professionalism of the report and the way the message is delivered. And, yes, unless the report is delivered on site or by the close of business the day of the inspection they want a more timely delivery of the report without losing report quality.

What is interesting to me is that, anecdotally, it feels like few deals are actually killed due to the inspection unless the buyer is looking for a way out. It makes me wonder:

  • What does a quality report mean to the realtor?
  • What is the right turnaround time?
  • What makes them refer specific inspectors vs. others?
  • What makes them drop an inspector from their referral list?
  • Does a money back guarantee or some other sort of “guarantee” affect their referral choices?
  • How many deals are unintentionally killed based on the inspection results?
  • Is it just the anxiety that the process creates that they would like to avoid?
  • How many of their clients are finding their own home inspector instead of relying on the referral?
  • Has this changed over the last few years?

I think a realtor survey is on the horizon. And then there is the lawyer,…