Welcome back to another episode of our Ask the Roofer series, I'm here with Matthew Query from Freedom Home Inspections, really good friend of mine; we've known each other for six seven years?.
Yeah at least!.
A while! Used to be Freedom Construction where you were general contractor.
I actually worked for him doing roofing and stuff like that; that's ancient history, you've been in home inspections, doing that side of the industry.
And we were talking before, you said you wrote a blog, you posted or you're getting ready to post it, about the benefits of having someone who's experienced in construction look at your home in the inspection process as opposed to somebody who's just a trained inspector but hasn't really been a builder or anything; can you talk about that a little bit?.
Yeah sure! The process of becoming a home inspector, while difficult, is not impossible.
A lot of larger home inspection companies can hire, you know younger guys that are willing to go up and get it, and train those guys for what to look for; but over 12 years of experience I've had in the new construction industry, you see a lot of stuff that you just can't read in a book.
Yeah! Is like working on the back of a restaurant, once you've been back there, you go to a restaurant afterwards and you're like; " I see that, I see that, I see that".
Yeah! You've gotten dirty, you washed the dishes, you've cooked the food, you know the ins and outs of it for sure.
It's interesting because as a builder, working for a couple different companies, of you know, run up to 30 to 35 houses just myself, in multiple different communities, sometimes even in multiple different code jurisdictions.
So with that, not that I wanted to do a bad job, but I didn't have time to spend 3-4 hours in a house because I wouldn't be able to see every house.
And as a builder you're bringing in subcontractors.
it could even be a great subcontractor but if they have one guy who's having a bad day or if they have a new guy that's not necessarily good at his job, that can make everybody up the chain look bad and can create some very costing mistakes.
Yeah absolutely! And even as far as like working with different code jurisdictions, the county enforcement officials, great guys but they also have a lot to look at.
And you know they got to get through umpteen different inspections, I think one guy I talked to in just Mecklenburg County had like 40 inspections in one day, he knew he wasn't going to get to it.
But as a builder in new construction, you're really building the house to appease the inspector.
So, I am a man of integrity, I'm gonna do the right thing always, but you know when a code enforcement official comes in and says he's not going to take a look at your roof trusses because it wouldn't fall back on him if there were a problem, you know there's there's flaws in the system.
But that's where home inspectors come in and they they bring great value, and that's where I bring my construction experience and.
What are some common things you see, and obviously there's thousands of different issues but what are some common things you see that are missed or done incorrectly like consistently?.
Well as far as pre-existing homes, just contractors that come in and do work in areas where they're not going to be viewed as easily, such as: in a crawl space, or in an addict.
One home in particular I felt so bad for the lady, she paid a contractor to come in and completely gut the house; and you know the crawl space was about yay tall and the amount of structural deficiencies I found in that crawlspace was astronomical.
And it's sad because there are people out there that will take advantage of the fact that people aren't going to get into those places but again that's why you pay me the big bucks to go into those.
Yeah! Well you say big bucks but it's not even that expensive.
No it's not, you know, the average inspections is probably 300 – 350 bucks and it takes me, I'll spend 3 hours at the house sometimes, if it's an older home that typically takes longer.
And several more hours writing up the report.
Yeah exactly! It can take three to four hours writing up the report so it's a very beneficial service and very inexpensive service as well.
Yeah! I mean, for the liability and the protection you pay money for your insurance, it's very similar, you're paying to protect your interests protect your home.
We've seen some crazy stuff like that, we've even done roof repairs before, or quoted repairs and obviously we're going to quote "hey this is what you can get away with it possible but it's going to last six months" and then "hey this is how to properly fix something".
We quoted this one lady and I think it was like 750 bucks, it was a whole chimney reflash in a really hard to get to location, like two-and-a-half stories up on a steep roof and it was rough.
Another gentleman came at a later time and quote her, he was like "let me take a look", went up there, did some work, came back down and said "you owe me 250 bucks", and she's like "I didn't even tell you to do the work".
And so we had taken pictures in our inspection like we always do, so we went back and he had just literally taking pieces of metal, caulk the side and caulk the bottom and stuck them on there and step them down, and it leaked the next time it rained.
Oh I bet, yeah!.
And so we were able to show her that "hey this is what it looked like when we were there, and this is what he did and it does you no good".
I know I've called you out when I worked for a previous company, you know I trusted you to come over and make sure that another contractor, that was the original contractor had done it right and the fact of the matter was, they didn't.
Many times they don't!.
Yeah! In one case particular I remember, they made the problem worse.
So it pays to have a company of integrity that's gonna look out for your best interests and not just the, you know the dollar figure to go out and, you know check something out.
I'll come out all day long and do a you know visual inspection tell you what I think, I've been doing that for my friends even before I was making money doing it.
Is just something I'm passionate about, I want to make sure people are protected.
Yeah! we need it in this area too.
We've talked about it before, we have a legitimate revenue stream off of other roofing contractors that do poor work and we have to go back and fix it which it it's a bad situation but we've talked so much about vetting people, back checking them, and I mean we're happy to, we're an open books, like if we do something we want to show you pictures "hey this is what we did, this is why we did it" but there's so many issues you can see.
And you're Charlotte company, like you are in Charlotte, we are in Charlotte, North Carolina.
Or in other places.
Well exactly but like right now we're in Charlotte and they're lots of, especially when you get like hailstorms, big storms, you get storm chasers and that's when you really gotta be careful right? because with all the guys, I've heard stories about them taking money and running.
We've seen, even after Hurricane Matthew which is not too distant past, tons of companies coming in and they're not doing good work at all and it causes problems down the road so.
Why do you think that is? You think they do it, I guess I have an idea, is it because they don't have a relationship.
Lack of integrity!.
Well that, and they don't have a relationship with local crews.
Yeah they don't! A lot of times is the qualifications for doing roof work here, you have a truck and you have a ladder, and you're doing sheet rock yesterday but today you're a roofer so.
I think it's just an all-around lack of care for longevity, legacy, and everybody's playing the short game, "hey we want to go sign this check" and have a commission at the end of the week and go buy a boat, they're not looking at 5, 10, 15 years down the road.
So they'll be here and gone in a year or or less, and they make some money and they're like "oh why is business so hard?" but they're not thinking about down the road so they don't care how their work reflects them they just want to collect that check, that's their whole goal.
I mean it's our goal too is to collect a check but for us, we want to collect a check for the next 20 years, we want to be here with a reputation of "hey we do proper work" and I'm building, were building legacy, were building a company, were providing a good product, we're solving a problem.
So it's just a different mentality, you see the same with builder,s I'm sure you see that with home inspectors; where they just come in, here's my check out list and I'm good to go.
Yeah they're the biggest, one of the things that caused me to want to jump into home inspections, was what I saw as a on the builder side, receiving the home inspection and being really frustrated.
like "I know I'm building a good quality house" and yeah I missed some stuff so I'm grateful for the fact that they found some stuff that I overlooked I'm only human.
Well working with that many houses there's going to be oversight and that's why there's a second layer.
But to come in and be rabble-rouser you know to.
Try to legitimize why they were there!.
Exactly! I don't need to legitimize my place in the world you know, that comes from my heavenly Father so I don't have to worry about that.
But when the inspector comes in and makes you feel bad about your purchase, or worries about it, makes you worry about it.
That's not fair and I don't want to do that, I want to use common sense language, I've obviously got to put disclaimers you know legally because that's just that the world we live in but bottom line is I want to make sure that, you know, my clients know what they're getting, and what's actually really a legitimate issue, and what you really should push back on to get fixed before you go to closing rather than "oh well you know, I saw this on the internet" now I'm gonna put this link in here and scare you about your purchase.
You know we see a lot of signs, and obviously for for roofing inspectors don't get on roofs, but across the board I've seen some reports that the entire report was they take a picture of something and it was copy and pasted "have a licensed contractor inspect this issue", and they didn't really document or call out, they just snap pictures and put just like, he just did the minimum he could and then left.
That did no good for the homeowner, just sike them out "oh man this property is in horrible condition because I need a contractor for every single thing to see what's really going on" so.
Yeah and I put that in my disclaimer at the beginning paragraph of a section and it's almost grayed out, it's like smaller subtext because it's not the important part; is there to cover me in the event something happens or whatever but the big information I don't put in every single section in HVAC, "called an HVAC contractor", "call a plumbing contractor", "call a you know roofing contractor.
I mean you know you gotta call roofing contractor.
I don't know if you knew this but I'm not allowed, per the standards of practice of North and South Carolina, I can't actually do work on a home for 12 months after I've done the inspection, so I have zero, you know.
No conflict of interest.
No conflict of interest, I have zero benefit for calling an item out.
I'm they're legitimately to try to help the client so.
Great! We're gonna put your information here so people can find you.
If you have home inspection questions, I know we hit a very broad kind of, we'll talk about some other stuff in other videos but if you have home inspection questions, please put them in the comments or things you're concerned about or issues.
I can obviously, we can talk about siding, roofing, windows, that kind of stuff but anything outside of that I mean we'll have Matt throw his expertise out there but.
Thanks for watching and we'll see you on the next one.