So, you’re a newbie property inspector, or perhaps you’ve been inspecting for a good few years now but still seem to put your foot in it? Unfortunately, any job that requires dealings with the human race will have its problems. Just as the homes you inspect are all unique in their own quirky ways, the tenants and owners of these homes are just the same way!
There are a few things, however, that any property inspector should never ever say to a client if he wants to stay out of trouble:
“I have the best rates”
Fantastic! You have the best rates. How about the quality of your work and service? Does that match your rates? Hmmm, not so smug anymore, now, are we? People subconsciously know that if they pay “cheap”, they get “cheap”. If you’d like to offer good prices, rather be on the lower side as opposed to the lowest side.
“I conduct my inspections alone”
This smacks of dishonesty and shiftiness. Your client will immediately think that you’re trying to hide something. Even if you do genuinely like carrying out your inspections alone, always remember that you are in the service industry and, out of courtesy, you should ask them if they would like to accompany you on the inspection.
“Let me give you a reference for that repair job”
I know that you are only trying to help out here but in doing so you are putting your reputation on the line as well as opening yourself up to possible litigation should the repair job go sour. Rather remain objective.
“My inspections usually take 15 to 20 minutes”
This is great if you really are giving a very rough, ballpark estimate. Other than that, it is better not to guess because if you estimated an inspection to take 20 minutes and it ended up taking an hour and a half, you will have some pretty fed up clients on your hands. What’s more, they will begin to think that you are dishonest, too.
“I’m old school”
Don’t get me wrong, there is absolutely nothing wrong with being “old school”. Old fashioned values are to be treasured and I wish more people had them these days. If you make this statement when referring to industry-specific technology (such as property inspection software) and practices, it is a big no-no and your clients would most likely not appreciate this.
The bottom line when dealing with clients in the property inspection business is to be courteous, honest and friendly. In addition to this, if you keep the above in mind, you should be fine!