CREIA Certified Home Inspector
 RELIANCE Home Inspections
310-572-4500

CREIA California Real Estate Inspection Association

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Inspection Services:

Home Inspections
Commercial Inspections
Apartment Inspections
Condominium Inspections
Large Estate Properties
Infrared Inspections

Additional Services:

Home Energy Audits/Upgrades
Mold Surveys
Solar Energy Expert
Expert Witness

Service Area:

All areas within 50 miles
of West LA including:

Beverly Hills
Culver City
Encino
Hollywood Hills
Los Angeles
Malibu
Manhattan Beach
North Hollywood
Pacific Palisades
Santa Monica
Sherman Oaks
Studio City
Tarzana
Valley Village
Venice
West Hollywood
Woodland Hills

Also Performing
Home Inspections,
Commercial Inspections,
Environmental Inspections,
Thermal Image Inspections
and Mold Inspections in...

Fees

Why Pay More?

If you’re looking for a low price, you should note Barry Stone’s advice in his “Ask the Home Inspector” column in the L.A. Times (2/11/07, K12): “The best approach is to find the most thorough and experienced home inspector, regardless of price. A defect missed by a bargain home inspector can cost many times the amount saved at the time of the inspection.” There are plenty of guys and gals trying to get into the business who have to compete on the basis of low price, if that’s what you really want. 

But if you want real value in a very thorough home inspection from an experienced home inspector, and you understand what that means, you’ll find my fees reasonable. Here’s why Barry’s advice describes my services: 

Call today so we can give you a quote on your property!

First of all, you benefit from my knowledge and experience, which gives you the best assurance that you’ll know what you’re getting into. I’ve been doing this almost 20 years. 

You can be confident that I will find out everything that can be reasonably discovered in the limited time we have for the inspection. Because I have done thousands of inspections, I know what to look for and where to look. I know where contractors like to cut corners, and how to find the evidence. Because I’ve been a contractor, I’ve seen how employees screw up, and I know what the industry standards are supposed to be. And I’ve got that “sixth sense” that comes with such experience. 

Many times, I have done an inspection on a house that fell out of escrow and had a recent inspection—and found MAJOR deficiencies that the less experienced inspector had missed. When you call certain other companies, you get one of their employee inspectors. I used to have employee inspectors. They wanted to get their training while working for me, and I had to pay for the mistakes every inspector is going to make until he/she has many years of experience, until I caught on. 

Some Realtors® prefer these multi-inspector firms, whose inspectors don’t “rock the boat.” The operators of these firms WANT less experienced inspectors for this reason, and because they can pay less and charge less. They compete on price, and serve Realtors’® interests, not yours. And some Realtors® think they are doing their clients a favor by saving them money on the inspection. I figure it took me about ten years to become a really good inspector, and I’m still learning. I joined CREIA, the California Real Estate Inspection Association, in 1987, and take advantage of their continuing education. CREIA membership requires at least 30 hours of continuing education each year and provides the opportunity to interact with other experienced inspectors regularly, with a pool of experience on which to draw whenever I have a question. I was the CREIA Newsletter editor in 1990-1991. 

Secondly, you will learn more about your prospective purchase from my inspection than from most others. I inspect more components, and in more depth, than most inspectors, going beyond the CREIA standards for a physical inspection. This is one reason I take more time for my inspections that other inspectors. Some Realtors® don’t like that—they’re busy folks—but YOU are my client, and a good Realtor® appreciates my thoroughness. 

I inspect only one house a day, and don’t see how somebody can do three or four, like some inspectors do. A new/almost new tract house in good condition might take 3 hours to inspect, but on an older 1,000-sq. ft. house, I’ll spend 4 hours or more—plus the time to edit the written report, which I dictate into a digital recorder as I go. 

I also inspect beyond the CREIA standards. Kitchen appliances are optional, but I inspect them. The standards call for, basically, inspecting one window and electrical receptacle per room; I inspect and test every one that is accessible. The CREIA standards are pretty much confined to the main building plus garage, but I inspect the entire property including perimeter walls, decks and such that are not attached, walkways, etc. This adds a chunk of time to the inspection, but I cover some components that are potentially expensive to repair. 

Secondly, you will learn more about your prospective purchase from my inspection than from most others. I inspect more components, and in more depth, than most inspectors, going beyond the CREIA standards for a physical inspection. This is one reason I take more time for my inspections that other inspectors. Some Realtors® don’t like that—they’re busy folks—but YOU are my client, and a good Realtor® appreciates my thoroughness. 

I inspect only one house a day, and don’t see how somebody can do three or four, like some inspectors do. A new/almost new tract house in good condition might take 3 hours to inspect, but on an older 1,000-sq. ft. house, I’ll spend 4 hours or more—plus the time to edit the written report, which I dictate into a digital recorder as I go. 

I also inspect beyond the CREIA standards. Kitchen appliances are optional, but I inspect them. The standards call for, basically, inspecting one window and electrical receptacle per room; I inspect and test every one that is accessible. The CREIA standards are pretty much confined to the main building plus garage, but I inspect the entire property including perimeter walls, decks and such that are not attached, walkways, etc. This adds a chunk of time to the inspection, but I cover some components that are potentially expensive to repair. 

Third, you’ll get an education about your prospective purchase along with your inspection. Some inspectors prefer that you leave them alone while they inspect, and may or may not go over their findings with you at the end. I prefer that you accompany me and ask a lot of questions. You’ll get information about what we’re looking at, how it works, what’s wrong with it (if anything), how to fix it, what to expect from its performance (if that can be described), options for improvement if appropriate, and so on. 

First-time buyers especially benefit from my unique service. You can take whatever time you need to understand everything, since I generally schedule only one inspection a day. 

Another way you’ll benefit from my unique service is that I have enough experience to figure out (most of the time) WHY something is not the way it should be. Most inspectors just refer you to other contractors to find out what is going on—and leave you at their mercy. Here too you’ll get and inspection that exceeds the CREIA standards, in being more specific about the deficiencies we find. You don’t have to line up numerous other contractors within your contingency period to tell you what is wrong and how big a problem it is, only to get specific estimates. 

Unscrupulous contractors can advise you that you need more than you actually do if you simply approach them with, “Our inspector wanted you to evaluate XX for possible deficiencies.” They have less latitude when you have the specific instructions that I give you. You won’t end up with (for instance) a new roof, or a deal-killing demand for one, when minor repairs are all that is necessary. 

Safety issues are important to you, so I’ll point out anything that could hurt you or your family, even those with a low probability of actually causing harm. I’ll explain them and the risks to you and your family, and I can suggest corrections if you wish—but it’s up to you to decide if you want to correct them. I’m a hawk on safety. 

You’ll get an inspection report that is totally specific to your purchase. You won’t have to wade though boilerplate to find the meat. Your written report is a list of everything you need to pay attention to. You can use it as a punch list. You can just check off what you wish to negotiate with the sellers and give it to them. 

I was the first inspector in Los Angeles with a computer-based reporting system, but I abandoned it as I became a better inspector. Since then, I’ve been evaluating computer-based systems, and have even purchased a couple. I find that using them takes too much time away from inspecting, and/or they do not allow for the specificity I want to give you (i.e., exactly WHICH receptacle in the room is defective). 

Now, I dictate notes as I inspect the property, using a checklist to make sure I cover everything. Back in the office, I edit the notes to organize and amplify them, and e-mail the report to you, usually by the end of the next day if not sooner. You’ll get a well-written report with proper grammar, correct spelling, punctuation and usage, too.

If you have any questions about environmental issues, I can answer them better than other inspectors, since my background includes five years of graduate study in Chemistry. Earlier in my career, I had EPA certifications for asbestos, radon, and lead inspections, but did not maintain these due to lack of demand relative to the cost. I still have the knowledge—more than most EPA-certified people—and am an American Chemical Society member with an attachment to the environmental chemistry division. 

I understand building science and how buildings work. It never ceases to amaze me how much my understanding of the basics of chemistry and physics has allowed me to problem-solve when I see something out-of-the-ordinary during an inspection. 

You’ll also get the benefit of my professional training—after earning an MBA at Stanford, I went to work with Price Waterhouse. Now, I “audit” buildings with the same meticulous professionalism and high ethical standards. 

Many people are concerned about mold, which can have serious health and financial consequences for homeowners (fortunately, these are rare). Since I’ve been doing mold inspections for about four years (and have done remediations), I automatically keep my eyes open for mold during my inspections. 

Many other inspectors, if they see any stains (or mold), will recommend that you call in a mold specialist—for $200 to $400 more, plus more time out of your contingency period. I offer that service, but do not specifically recommend it in normal circumstances. 

If find anything that even looks like mold on your inspection, I’ll discuss it with you and help you decide what to do. Sampling and laboratory analysis does not add value in many cases; cleaning or limited repair may be all you need. 

Testimonial

RELIANCE Home Inspection did a thorough job of inspecting my new condo. Because of their expertise, I was able to have nooks and crannies fixed that I would have easily overlooked. I am confident that my new home is up to par and would highly recommend their services to all.

Virginia M.

 

 

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310-572-4500

 
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