The Noise Of Silence

August 30, 2008

home inspection speech

Recently I had the opportunity to speak in front of the Arizona ASHI members at their 2 day conference in Mesa. Kinda my first big speaking gig in front of a large audience. Wish I could say it went better. And I say this, not because the material presented was bad, it was the delivery or lack thereof. If I could do one thing over it’d be the opening 5 minutes, as this is where I mentally struggled to get my pace and thoughts on track.

It was just after asking the first simple question to the audience that I’d gotten thrown off and gored by the white noise. You know, the noise in your own head when your are greeted with silence from the crowd after asking for feedback. Your not sure how to react, and that was where I fell. I reacted by talking louder “at” them, which made me feel better, but further distanced me from the audience. But I do have to say this, I risked it and I learned from it. Stepping out and doing what others won’t or can’t is how you grow personally and professionally. Not to mention monetarily.

There were some who thanked me for the presentation and others who chimed in and said it was what they needed to hear. But I knew it from the moment the white noise hit, that personally, I had bombed. I missed the connection, or maybe it was that trust hadn’t been established, or…. So many thoughts of what went wrong, and I had them all in the split second that I recognized the white noise of an unresponsive audience.

What makes this post so annoying for me is that the same thing happened during a Webinar I hosted the other night on Phase Inspections. Six home inspectors on the line and none would volunteer feedback on the easiest of questions.

I’ve thought about it a lot since then, to the point of signing up for Toastmasters. I’ll post on how the first meeting strikes me.

Home Inspection & Negotiation

August 24, 2008

This article was written for the Vail Sun (local newspaper), for an up coming home buyers seminar. The article took a few hours to write but it was well worth the FREE exposure.

Home inspections are now considered a necessity by many Realtors and for good reason. Clients who do not want a home inspection are often times asked to sign an advisement notice. Something that says that they were counseled to have an inspection done, but decided otherwise. Making a client acutely aware of the importance of a home inspection is now stock and trade for anyone in the Real Estate profession. 

Why is it that important? After all it’s another few hundred out the door and the fee’s are piling up. We’ll for the buyer, it’s a built in re-negotation tool. The standard real estate contract has a satisfactory (to the buyer) home inspection contingency clause.

In Arizona, after acceptance of an offer, there are no more counter offers except in the case of a contingency such as a home inspection. You can’t just decide not to buy the place without giving up your escrow funds unless a contingency is in force.

If a buyer is not satisfied with the condition of the property he can ask for the escrow funds to be returned and continue his house search, or, if he still likes the home but not at the cost of repairs, request of the seller, re-negotiated terms covering some or all of the anticipated costs.

The seller upon notification of an unsatisfactory report, also has the right to refuse further negotiations, return the escrowed money’s and wait for another buyer, or, the more probable response, re-negotiate the terms with respect to the inspection report.

In a buyers market, this is powerful stuff that can save you big dollars if the property needs some work.

Having major repairs or large maintenance issues addressed at the negotiation table will greatly enhance the homeowner experience. Not to mention keeping some of your hard earned cash in your pocket.

A client last week sent me an email expressing thanks for the great job and gave me a few details on how the transaction turned out. She was one of those clients that didn’t think she really needed a home inspection and was sort of talked into it.  In effect she re-negotiated to the tune of $9,500.00 as a result of the report, which was a bit more than the anticipated repairs to the property.

According to the American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI), a home inspection on average, returns about 10 times on your money. Not bad odds, and my direct experience proves this out. Just a hand full of the hundreds of inspection I do a year have less than the inspection fee in reported repairs.

Warning: Home inspections are not a commodity, you can’t buy the exact same report from two different providers. The experience and education that each individual home inspector brings to the table varies widely. As such, price shopping for a home inspection is akin to price shopping for a brain surgeon.

Not getting the best you can afford may have dire consequences to your pocket book and rainy day fund.

Bob Kille

Acuspect Home Inspections   520-237-8965

One Contested Seat

July 29, 2008

board room meetingI just submitted my ballot for the Arizona ASHI chapter leadership and while doing so, it struck me that there was actually a contested seat on the board. So what that means is – only one home inspector out of 135 Arizona ASHI members thought he was better qualified for the position than the selected/persuaded opponent. A home inspector who actually stood up and is asking for the spot for his own reasons.

What could some of the reasons be? Well, chief among them, becoming known. This may not be his reason of course, but it could be yours. There is also the nice attribute of having something meaningful on your list of credentials and a nice healthy networking experience.

Given the choice, so few home inspectors step out of their comfort zone and up into an easily attainable spot of notoriety among their peers. Why do I say – easily attainable, well for the most part, most of these guys had to be asked/persuaded to volunteer by someone who wanted to vacate the spot. Very few actually campaigned, or for that matter, asked for the seat.

I ask you, what better way is there to become the professional home inspector that you aspire to be? Not many of us are comfortable in a leadership role, but that uncomfortable edge is where life is lived and rewarded. The REWARDS you say? Yes, the rewards can be staggering on the road less traveled. At times it feels like a super highway the way things hit you so fast.

There’s only room at the top for those that put themselves in a position of learning and serving. I can’t think of a better place to stick you neck out for the first time than that of the company of your peers. I hope to see at least two contested spots next year, heck I might even throw my hat in the ring again.

Copyright © 2005 by Bob Kille. To read other home inspection related articles or to view home inspection software and book publications by Mr. Kille, click on this link.

Home Inspector Round Table

August 26, 2007

Bob Kille Acuspect Home InspectionThe Arizona American Society of Home Inspectors educational conference has come and gone. As always, the ones who just can’t get enough education, stay awhile and talk over a few beers.

The last to leave the conference room, it struck me funny that those that need the interaction of the fellowship the most, the new entrants, sought out their education only from the classes offered. It has been my experience that going early and staying late has always been much more educational than the actual event. The lunches and the breaks are where I have personally benefited from a lot of good inside advice, well worth the admission.

In my opinion these events are more about creating relationships than they are about the class offerings. That’s probably a secret, whoops. While the classes may be educational, not showing up early and/or staying late to strike up conversations at these events is a huge mistake. If your the insecure type and just can’t get up the nerve to start up a conversation or step into a gathered circle, seek out some help before its too late.

Home inspection, in case you haven’t figured it out yet, is a relationship business.

Copyright © 2005 by Bob Kille. To read other home inspection related articles or to view home inspection software and book publications by Mr. Kille, click on this link.

Right Between The Toes

April 4, 2007

Bob Kille Acuspect Home Inspection This short essay is about initative and addictive behavior.

It just so happens that my sister is in the handcrafted soap business and is struggling to get it going. Much of what she sells is done through craft shows at a display booth. Like all the others, your at the mercy of the traffic flow past your booth. Any signage or hawking you can do to get a prospect to stop is what makes or breaks your day. Similar to your home inspection ad copy in any medium.

So on with the story, I’m on the phone speaking to my sisters signifigant other and he starts telling me what happened to him out at the craft show he did alone over the weekend. The show had a fairly light attendance and Ronny who is addicted to talking (just ask anyone) wasn’t getting anyone to stop at the booth. Ronny, I should mention is a Harley rider and looks the part, beard, tank top, chained wallet, tattoos and all. Yep, selling soaps and lotions at a craft show.

When an addict needs a fix he doesn’t stop to think about all the reasons why he couldn’t possibly get it, he just focuses all his energies in one direction. So here’s Ronny with no one to talk too and getting sore feet to boot. Then it hits him! Ronny had a recent heart bypass and takes along a folding recliner and foot stool when doing the craft shows. He could get it em out and rest his feet or…

He could sit the ladies down for a free foot massage using the featured lotions.

Out came the recliner and down sat the ladies. The booth quickly became a “giggle fest” as Ronny put it, that lasted the entire day. Other vendors came down to see what all the fuss and traffic stoppage was about and so did the local TV crew. The next day was the same and along came another TV crew for the nightly news. If this wasn’t enough, one of the other vendors has a local radio show and asked Ronny to come down to the station for a live interview for Misty Mountian Soap Company.

In my opinion the ladies just wanted a biker to massage their feet and bought the lotion as a souvnier. Just kidding Ronny.

Initiative and addictive behavior seem to have alot in common. Think about it.

Copyright © 2005 by Bob Kille. To read other home inspection related articles or to view home inspection software and book publications by Mr. Kille, click on this link.

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