Interview with Real Estate Agent: How Inspectors Stand Out

REA Interview: What Makes an Inspector Stand Out

In today’s post we’re going to jump into an interview I did recently with a real estate sales representative in my area.

Jess Hornung, of, goes into some great detail and shares insights on:

  • what makes inspectors stand out to her
  • how she got connected with her first inspector
  • what makes her call an inspector back
  • And More!

Jess shares some huge insights with us.

This is perfect for new inspectors looking to get into the mind of a Realtor®.

Alright – here we go.

Andrew: Hey Jessica, thank you for taking the time to meet me today. How are you?

Jessica: I’m Good, thanks. How are you?

Andrew: Good! Alright – let’s dive in. As you know, I work with home inspectors and as you also know… they like to market to real estate sales representative. With your area of expertise, I am hoping to get some deeper insights into how the average inspector, or even the new home inspector, can stand out to you as a Realtor.

Andrew: Jumping right in, how often do inspectors drop by your office and present to you?

Jessica: Often. We get several inspectors come in that present to us.

Andrew: What do you think of the presentations?

Jessica: They’re good. I like meeting new inspectors, especially when I need to call someone on short notice for a client. It is very saturated though… there are lots of inspectors in the area.

Andrew: So, it sounds like a quick response time is important to you.

Jessica: Yes, definitely. My problem is that sometimes I need an inspection very fast. Like, can you come tomorrow morning if I call you this afternoon? In a hot market we have 3-5 days to get everything done, and the inspection needs to be done before other things that need to happen in that time frame.

Andrew: What makes a home inspector stand out to you?

Jessica: Responsiveness and flexibility. Again, when my clients are chomping at the bit and the housing market is in a bubble, I need inspectors that are ready to go. This scenario isn’t always the case, but when I know I can count on an inspector they stand out to me.

Andrew: Do you do many pre-purchase inspections?

Jessica: Not in this area, no. I see areas with more money having more inspections like that. More money, more likely… like in Toronto. Buyers book several showings to find their perfect home and don’t want to pay for an inspection if they aren’t even going to get their offer accepted.

Andrew: Do you find you supply your clients with referrals or do they generally have someone they know to inspect their home?

Jessica: Sometimes… if the client doesn’t have one then I will give them options. I never push just one inspectors to maintain my professional and ethical obligations to my clients. Most home buyers ask for my opinion. More savvy people, like experienced buyers or investors usually have their go-to inspector already.

Andrew: What is important to you when referring an inspector?

Jessica: Warranty program or insurance are important from a buyers perspective. It is an added bonus if they go out and get the certifications before they’re forced to by any upcoming bills. Also WETT certified inspectors are great. Especially for old wood burning appliances. It can save time and money by all being done in one go if the insurance company requires it, rather than coming back again just for the WETT inspection.

Andrew: How did you connect with your first inspector?

Jessica: Networking events. When I first started I went to a lot, and still go out sometimes, to networking events in the area. I met an inspector that was starting up at the same time as me that was also attending the events. This inspector also came by and did a presentation for us at Coldwell.

Andrew: What made him stand out to you?

Jessica: He was flexible. Also his availability is amazing. He’s so busy because of it… very well known in the area. He also knows how to present his findings to the client without blowing things out of proportion or terrifying the client. He’ll be straight forward with the client. He’ll say things like “This is an issue that needs attention. It’s not a big fix, but you should be wary of it.” And he may even give a soft estimate sometimes. He helps the client feel comfortable and helps them understand it a bit better.

Like, one time, not this inspector, but this other person scared a client into thinking there was a big issue with the property. The issue was a non GFCI outlet… while very important to address, this isn’t a deal killer and shouldn’t be presented in that way. It’s a cheap fix.

Andrew: Alright, let’s pretend a brand new home inspector opens up shop in your town. What makes you do business with them?

Jessica: Being available on short notice is a good way to stand out and get in front of my client. Like we talked about earlier, in a hot market sometimes we need an inspection the next day. We’ll have 3-5 days generally, and we’ll need to process the mortgage in that time too, so we really have less time than that. The banks all want an inspection before they will approve loans. The faster the inspection, the easier it makes it for me to do my job, which is to get the client their dream home. If we miss deadlines, we can miss out on the deal all together.


Check out Jessica at and connect with her on Facebook! She sells real estate just East of Toronto in Canada. 


About the Author Andrew McBurney

Andrew is an SEO expert and digital marketing enthusiast. His knowledge of SEO coupled with his social work background makes him an excellent candidate to help YOU get to the top of your industry's search engine results pages.