I’m sure you heard the saying “good, fast and cheap never go together”?  If not, then its a good thing for you to know about, especially when hiring a home inspector to inspect your new home.  I recently received a call from a perspective client for a price for a new home inspection in Chicago, Illinois.  The home boasted 5 bedrooms and 3 baths and was built in 2009.  Our price to inspect this property is $495.00.  The client said she was quoted $275.00 for what she thought was the same home inspection services.  If you are a real estate professional you know that this doesn’t sound right.  In fact, I would be scared!

Here are the questions you should ask your home inspector if your in the Chicago area:

1.   How long have you been in business?

2. Do you have recommendations that we can see either on your web site or community areas on the Internet?

3. What did you do before becoming a home inspector?  Most home inspectors never worked in the construction industry and couldn’t repair a cabinet hinge!

4. Do you have insurance?  Home inspection services do not have to carry insurance by law in Illinois??  So, because the state doesn’t protect you, you  must protect yourself.  Most of the home inspection costs come from Errors and Omission Insurance.  This insurance is to protect the home inspector if he or she misses any item on your property.  Very Important!!

5. Do you offer thermal imaging as part of your home inspection services?  Thermal Imaging?  Check it out ~ http://www.pinnaclepropertyinspection.com/thermal-imaging.html. This a very important tool that you need at your new home inspection.  Things that can not be seen by the naked eye are found with this tool.

6. Can you give me prices for items in need of repair?  Majority of home inspectors have not worked in the construction industry and don’t know the prices for repairs.  You can see some of our prices at ~ http://www.pinnaclepropertyinspection.com/repair-replacement-costs.html.

7. How long does your new home inspection take?  If your home inspector says their home inspection services take an hour or two for a 5 bedroom house you might want to take a pass.  This inspection should take anywhere between 3-5 hours depending on issues found with time to explain how to repair those issues.  Watch our home inspection services we videoed at a Chicago home inspection ~ http://www.pinnaclepropertyinspection.com/watchaninspection.html.

As you can see, there are many questions you need to ask to see if you are comparing apples to apples.  Not all home inspectors are the same.  When considering the home inspection cost, think about the expertise and knowledge behind the home inspection services. This includes the comprehensive home inspection report, insurance, proper licencing, quality assurance program, inspection warranties and so much more.  If you have more questions on what to ask your perspective home inspector please contact me at ~ http://www.pinnaclepropertyinspection.com/about-jim-kolke.html.

Thanks for stopping by.  Jim Kolke

Here’s an email I received from one of my clients:


I just wanted to say thank you for doing such a thorough inspection today. I did my research beforehand on you and had high expectations, but was even more impressed in person.

Also, the other day I found your $50 discount on yelp, but didn’t even bother bringing it up today as I felt your services far exceeded the initial quoted fee.

I’ll be leaving a very positive review in the near future and sending anyone who needs an inspection your way.


Thanks again. Gary

How to unclog your toilet with Jim Kolke Want to save some serious cash?  If you follow my blog or articles then you know that I am a licensed plumber and I love to empower home owners to perform their own repairs and more important save money!  I was hired for a pre-listing home inspection in Niles, Illinois where I found that the toilet was blocked.  Most people that know me will tell you I love to work on systems when they break.  As you will see, I went to the truck and brought in all kinds of tools to fix this toilet.

If you decide to do these repairs on your toilet, you must be very careful because the china that toilets are made of can be very sharp if broken.  My clients from the Niles home inspection were amazed on how easy it was to unclog their own toilet.  I guess this toilet is close to the children’s bedrooms and the occasional toy goes down this toilet.  If you have children, then you probably will have this same issue.

You can see other videos that we performed at the Niles home inspection at http://www.pinnaclepropertyinspection.com/watchaninspection.html.  My clients wanted a home inspector from the Niles area that new the homes and was able to tell them how to fix issues that they would come across on any day.

If you need further assistance on these issues or other items that were not spoke about today please contact me at  http://www.pinnaclepropertyinspection.com/about-jim-kolke.html.

Thanks for stopping by. Jim Kolke

Clogged tub drain. Learn how to clear it. Do you have a tub that takes forever to drain?  Do you take showers standing in inches of water?  I’ll show you how to remedy slow draining or totally blocked drains of a tub.  The Highland Park, Illinois home inspection had a tub that was totally blocked and was in dire need of repair.

The 2 plunger trick I used at the Highland Park home inspection worked because I was diligent on holding a vacuum seal over the overflow piping.   The home was an older home that had a drum trap.  There are other articles that I have written that will show you how to work on a drum trap.  The direct site for this article is http://www.pinnaclepropertyinspection.com/blog/archives/748?preview=true&preview_id=748&preview_nonce=b06a411cd7.  Unfortunately drum traps are cumbersome to work on but can be done if patient.

The “P” trap is now used and is less prone to have issues like blockages.  Generally these blockages are due to cast iron or galvanize piping.  Most of the new waste piping systems that are installed in homes are made of pvc piping.  If the home owners of the Highland Park home inspection had to hire a plumber they would have to pay them at least $125.00 – $250.00 depending where you live.  You can see other prices of other home issues at ~ http://www.pinnaclepropertyinspection.com/repair-replacement-costs.html.

Hopefully this video we shot at the Highland Park home inspection will save you money by empowering you to do your own home repairs.  If you need further help with this issue or other issues then please contact me at ~ http://www.pinnaclepropertyinspection.com/about-jim-kolke.html

Thanks for stopping by.  Jim Kolke