Choosing a Home Inspector

So you are buying a home and need a home inspection. But how do you find a good home inspector that is qualified and that you can trust? Good news – Your search is over.

Desert Diamond Home Inspections is the best choice for your home inspection. Here’s why:

  • Trustworthy – We work only for you and have only your best interest in mind. We abide by the ASHI Code of Ethics which has integrity, honesty, and objectivity as its core principles. We do NOT work for the realtor. We do NOT pay realtors to recommend us. We do NOT take money from realtors to write a clean report to help them make the sale. We only work for YOU, our client.
  • Professional – We have years of experience inspecting homes full-time. We belong to ASHI, the most respected professional association for home inspectors in North America, which holds us to the highest standards of practice and requires continuing education to ensure we have the latest industry knowledge. We carry General Liability and Errors and Omissions insurance for your protection.
  • Detailed – Our inspections take two to two to three hours on average because we pay attention to detail. We carefully examine your house top to bottom, including attics and crawlspaces, to ensure nothing is missed. We provide you with a very detailed home inspection report within 24 hours of the inspection. Our reports are well structure, written in plain English, narrative style, easy to understand, contain many photos, and provide lots of useful information.
  • Caring – We take pride in our customer service. We care about you, our client, and want you to know everything there is to know about your house. The home inspection report will also include useful information such as where the main shut-offs are for water, power, and gas, the air filter size you need to buy, home maintenance tips, and more. Most importantly, we are available to you after the inspection to answer any questions you might have.

What you get with your home inspection:

  • A friendly, personable, and competent home inspector
  • A thorough inspection of the house meeting or exceeding the Arizona ASHI Standards of Professional Practice
  • A detailed high-quality narrative-style home inspection report with many photos and useful information
  • Unlimited phone or video consultations before and after the inspection to answer all your questions
  • Free copy of The Southern Arizona Home Maintenance Book – everything you need to know to keep your home in great shape
  • Home maintenance tips and recommendations
  • Free access to a home maintenance Facebook group

Contact us now to schedule your home inspection!

How To Choose A Home Inspector

There are several ways to find a home inspector:

  • Random online search
  • Recommendations from people you know
  • Recommendations from your real estate agent
  • List of local inspectors on the American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI) website

Verify Them

Regardless of how you decide to make a list of possible candidates, you should do further research. In Arizona, home inspectors are regulated by the Arizona State Board of Technical Registration. Contact them – btr.az.gov – and verify that the home inspector is indeed registered with them and in good standing.

Review Them

Look up their company online and read reviews on Facebook or Google to get a first impression of how previous clients like and rate them. Be cautious though with reviews from certain online sources that could be for-pay or astro-turfed.

Interview Them

Most importantly though, call each one and conduct a phone interview. Here are a list of questions you should ask when interviewing potential home inspectors.

How many years have you been in business and how many homes have you inspected?

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    You want somebody who has been doing this for years and has at least a thousand inspections under their belt.

    Do you inspect full-time or part-time?

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    You want somebody who takes his job seriously and does this full-time as his main profession. Reconsider if they only inspect part-time or on the side to make some extra money.

    Are you a member of a professional trade organization such as the American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI)?

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    Any serious home inspector is a member of a professional trade organization to help them grow as an inspector and to further their knowledge. Reconsider if they are not.

    Do you take continuing education every year to stay current?

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    Continuing education is very important to keep up with the industry. Professional trade organizations such as ASHI require it of their members. Reconsider if they do not.

    How long do your inspections take on average?

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    A thorough home inspection takes several hours. Thorough home inspectors typically do not inspect more than two homes in a day. Reconsider if their inspection takes only an hour or so and they do many inspections in a day.

    Do you do a walk-through with your customer at the end of the inspection?

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    While every inspector will provide a report where you can read about their findings, there is simply no substitute for a walk-through where they show you in person and on site what they found, and answer all of your questions. Reconsider if they leave immediately after the inspection without giving you a detailed summary and answering all your questions.

    Are you available by phone for follow-up questions after the inspection?

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    Even with a walk-through and a thorough report, sometimes there are questions that arise days or weeks after the inspection. Your inspector should be willing to talk to you on the phone and help you with any follow-up questions. Reconsider if they do not offer follow-up phone consultations.

    Do you have General Liability (GL) insurance and Errors and Omissions (E&O) insurance?

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    This is a trick question. If they are registered with the Arizona State Board of Technical Registration as required, they must have GL and either E&O insurance (preferred) or a bond. Reconsider if they do not have either.

    How quickly do you deliver your reports after the inspection?

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    A good home inspector will deliver the final report with photos within 24 hours of the inspection. Reconsider if they cannot commit to prompt report delivery. After all, you only have a ten-day inspection period, and time is of the essence.

    Are your reports checklists or written/narrative-style? Do your reports contain plenty of photos and annotations?

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    While every inspector will provide some sort of report, there are many different report styles depending on the software they use. A good home inspection report is written in a narrative style in English that is easy to understand, contains numerous photos and annotations to help document the issues found, and provides useful information specific to that inspection. Ask for a sample report. Reconsider if their report is only a basic checklist or does not include photos, or if they refuse to provide a sample report.

    Do you always inspect attics and crawlspaces?

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    As long as they are accessible and safe to access, a home inspector should always inspect attics and crawlspaces. Sure, there are exceptions if there is no access, not enough clearance, or a safety issue. A good inspector will do his best to get into attics and crawlspaces. Reconsider if they make excuses why they don’t. You might laugh, but there are too many home inspectors who are too, uh, corpulent to fit or do not possess the agility or strength to navigate attics.
    If they are available the same day, or seem too eager to book you right away, chances are they are new to the business or their business is not going well for some reason. If they are already booked for the next two weeks, they are probably good at their job and successful, but that doesn’t help you since you have only a limited ten-day inspection period. Ideally, you will find somebody who has the experience and can take you within a few days, and is willing to accommodate your schedule and inspect on a weekend if necessary.

    Do you charge extra for older homes, crawlspaces or attics, weekend inspections, etc.?

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    Make sure that they are clear and up front about their fee structure. Reconsider if they offer a very low base rate but then nickel and dime you to death with add-on fees.
    With most of your phone interviews, you will most likely never even get to this question because you have already disqualified them and hung up. This really should be the very last question you ask. Never ask this question first, and never hire a home inspector based on how cheap they are. You are about to make one of the biggest financial commitments of your life and you are hiring a home inspector to make sure you are not making the biggest mistake of your life. Do you really want the cheapest inspector for that job? Or do you want the one that will do the best job for you?