October, 2011
Inspection News and Views from the American Society of Home Inspectors

Editor's Note: Disaster Response


"It is difficult to comprehend the hardships being experienced by you, your families and friends as result of the recent earthquake, hurricane and floods. Our thoughts and prayers are with you."

— Jeff Arnold, ASHI executive director

This was the message from our executive director to members on the East Coast in September's First Thing. Since then raging wildfires in the Southwest and flooding in the Gulf Coast region have been added to the list of challenging conditions experienced by ASHI members, their families, friends and clients.

In this issue, you'll find some photos and a short message from Paul Andreassen, a member who is actively responding to the disaster on the East Coast. Across the country, members are coping with the damage and, like Paul Andreassen, are using their unique skills to help others.

Natural disasters have joined a chaotic housing market to create unique demands on professional home inspectors. In today's real estate market, a home inspection is extremely important to people willing to take the risk of buying a short sale or foreclosed property. Sellers who want their house to stand out in a stagnated market are well-served by a home inspection that allows them to present that house to buyers in "move-in condition." And, those who must stay in their homes long term benefit from a maintenance inspection.

After past natural disasters, members have worked with agencies evaluating homes and places of business, and some are qualified to advise on how to rebuild to be less vulnerable to future events.

Who remembers the days when buyers were willing to forego an inspection to win the bidding war on the house they wanted? Those days are long gone.

Even though today the skills and talents of professional home inspectors are as important as ever, the economy and in some places disaster-aftermath make life and operating a business extremely difficult for many.

If members have ideas, suggestions and personal experiences they believe would be of value to other members, please send them to headquarters. While we're unable to respond "hands-on" in the field, we can serve as a clearinghouse for members supporting members.