Inspection Training

Customer Complaint Training – Leaving Heating System On After Home Inspection

CUSTOMER COMPLAINT – The seller of a vacant home went to the property a week after the home inspection to find that the boiler had been left turned on in two of the four zones of the property. They called the listing agent who called the buyer agent who called us to complain about this situation. The seller was very angry and is not happy about the possible costs associated with paying the heating bill after the boiler was left on for an entire week.

PROCEDURE – While performing the inspection of the heating system it is imperative that the system gets turned off after operation. In order to ensure this the procedure is to take a picture of the thermostat before it is touched so the original setting can be documented. After taking that picture the heating system should be turned on using the thermostat and the inspector should check for operable heat at all registers. After documenting the heating system is working the thermostat needs to be restored to the original setting and the second picture needs to be taken at this point. These pictures are time stamped just in case it is ever brought into question that we forgot to set the thermostat to the original setting. If there are multiple thermostats this procedure should be used for every thermostat that is operated for the heating system.

RESOLUTION – After speaking to the buyer agent and going through the report it was concluded that our inspector most likely forgot to turn off the two zones for the boiler. The report only had the pictures for one of the four thermostats so this complaint could not be properly defended and we have to take responsibility for leaving the heating system on for over a week. The final resolution was to have the seller’s inform us the cost of the heating bill and if it is abnormally high we would assist in paying the bill. This seemed to be an amicable resolution for all parties involved.