Seattle Residential: I Do That: "Oh, They Didn't Need You. The County Did The Inspection"

"Oh, They Didn't Need You. The County Did The Inspection"

I found this warning from Jay something every buyer should read. If your agent suggests you might not need an inspection, your agent might, in fact or in deed, be working for the seller. Check it out.

How do I approach this post?

Unbelievably I was called and scheduled to inspect this house

When I had looked at it previously I did not know the Flipper, but I did know, from reading the sign, that the house had been purchased by and was being remodeled by one of the local Counties.  It was then to be "sold" to some family unable to purchase it without some form of assistance.  What disgusted me when I saw it previously was that the Flipper was an unbelievable con artist and that some poor soul was to live in that house.

It turns out that "poor soul" was going to be my client and I was chomping at the bit to inspect this place!!

Not knowing exactly when it was to be finished, the Realtor asked me to wait for a call to confirm the date.

THE CALL NEVER CAME.  And being busy with scheduled inspections, I forgot about it.

Then yesterday the same Realtor called to schedule something different.  Remembering this house, I had to ask about it!

"Oh, they didn't need you.  The County did the inspection."

This is coming from a Realtor!  I couldn't believe it!!  "The County doesn't employ home inspectors.  Who did the inspection?"

"The contractor who did the work.  He walked them around showing them everything he did.  The house looked beautiful!  They were real happy.  They are in it now.  Since the inspection was FREE, we didn't need to call you."

Aggghhh!  I have to say, my heart sank! 

Here is a couple who CLEARLY doesn't know what they don't know.  And they have bought a house!

And they are getting and accepting very bad advice from many sources!

  • They can't afford a house without assistance.
  • They have put their trust in the County, their Realtor and this schmuck contractor.
  • They have "bought" a house that was so unsafe outside, this home inspector was AFRAID to go inside!
  • They think all home inspections are the same, that a walk through is a home inspection and that it is FREE, so it must be a good deal!
  • They are so strapped they can't afford a home inspection.  Then they CERTAINLY can't afford future repairs.  And there will be future repairs!!
  • THIS is the crux of the sub-prime problem.  We are still in it.

I have to say, honestly, that Mr. Jay is really, really, really tempted to send her a link to his blog about this house, but probably won't.  No point in stirring that pot.  I think the house will stir it soon enough!

My recommendation:  if you ever, ever, ever feel like a home does not need a home inspection, ESPECIALLY if it was remodeled by a Flipper or "the County," call me so I can gently, quietly and politely PILE DRIVE SOME SENSE INTO YOUR HEAD!




Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC

Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia





Glenn Roberts



Comment balloon 7 commentsGlenn Roberts • January 26 2011 08:26AM


Glenn.  I generally hear this from new home reps.  I hear it over and over again.  WRONG!!

Posted by Lenn Harley, Real Estate Broker - Virginia & Maryland (Lenn Harley,, MD & VA Homes and Real Estate) almost 8 years ago

Glenn - I have found this true for new homes, too. Client says, Its new, there shouldn't be anything wrong with it! I am still amazed...Have a great day!

Posted by Peter den Boer, MBA,GRI, Associate Broker, Realtor (Atlanta Communities) almost 8 years ago

Oh my, sounds bad from the start.  Can't believe a sales agent would not care enough about their client to look out for them, I hope they are happy and don't regret their decision.

Posted by Wayne Weaver (ERA Team VP Real Estate) almost 8 years ago

Often the "bank will catch it" thinking is used when problems need exposure like a heart treadmill stress test would uncovered as you huff and puff up the increasing incline Glenn!

Posted by Andrew Mooers | 207.532.6573, Northern Maine Real Estate-Aroostook County Broker (MOOERS REALTY) almost 8 years ago

Glenn, What great post and worthy re-blog. Clients think we are expensive? No way! We potentially save buyers thousands of dollars at a time. If they'll listen,

Posted by Charles Edwards Bentonville, AR REALTOR, Bentonville Real Estate Agent and Broker (Coldwell Banker Harris McHaney & Faucette 479-253-3796 ) almost 8 years ago

ooo I missed the original post but man, Glen, what to do! That's a tough predicament to be in!!  Thanks for re-blog and to inform so many others of this growing epidemic and pit fall for buyers!

Tammy Emineth

Posted by Tammy Emineth, Content Marketer, SEO Teacher, Website Fixer (Personal SEO - Website SEO and Real Estate Marketing) almost 8 years ago

After reading this post and the previous post on this topic all I can say is "wow".  Perhaps this would be a good time to do a "pro bono" home inspection?  Now that would be real job satisfaction!

Posted by Tony and Suzanne Marriott, Associate Brokers, Serving Scottsdale, Phoenix and Maricopa County AZ (BVO Luxury Group @ Keller Williams Arizona Realty) almost 8 years ago