Realtor - Amanda S. Davidson: Are Home Inspectors Ever Wrong?

Are Home Inspectors Ever Wrong?

Are Home Inspectors Ever Wrong?

Most of the time when we’re talking home inspectors it revolves around buyers hiring one to inspect the home they’re purchasing. That’s not always the case though. Homeowners and seller’s hire home inspectors too. Home inspectors can identify repairs that are needed or going to be needed in the future and that can avoid costly deferred maintenance for homeowners or give sellers a chance to correct a problem prior to going on the market.

Are Home Inspectors Ever Wrong?


I always like to compare a home inspection to going to the doctor to get a physical. It’s not a pass or fail activity. Home inspectors are looking for items that need repair or even replacement, safety items, and do a visual overview of the home. They’re not there to take drywall down, to look behind walls, or do anything invasive to the home. After they complete their inspection they’ll compose a report often with pictures that includes their findings.


Home Inspection Report

This poses the question – are home inspectors ever wrong? Let’s start by pointing out they’re human and no one is perfect so based off that alone yes, there are times inspectors are wrong. We’re all wrong at some point in our lives. Aside from being human and capable of error they’re also not able to see behind walls, under concrete, under floors etc. No two home inspectors are the same. Odds are if you have a home inspection done by two different inspectors they’ll have items that are the same in their reports but, other items that one found and the other didn’t or vice versa. A professional and reputable home inspector will recommend further evaluation if he’s unsure of something or feels there’s more that needs to be looked into.

To read more on this topic check out our full article


Are Home Inspectors Ever Wrong?


Amanda Davidson Real Estate Group

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Comment balloon 24 commentsAmanda S. Davidson • January 07 2018 02:17PM


Anyone can make mistakes, but a good home inspector is a great tool to have on your side.

Posted by JL Boney, III, Columbia, SC Real Estate (Coldwell Banker) over 1 year ago

So true, Amanda.  Home inspectors can make mistakes, and no two inspectors will have the exact same report.  I find this true sometimes with appraisers.

Posted by Rebecca Gaujot, Realtor®, Lewisburg WV, the go to agent for all real estate (Vision Quest Realty) over 1 year ago

Mine are seldom wrong, but they also will not if the buyer or seller should have a different professional take a look,

Posted by William Feela, Realtor, Whispering Pines Realty 651-674-5999 No. (WHISPERING PINES REALTY) over 1 year ago

Hi Amanda, I wouldn't go so far as to say they are wrong, but they can often stir something up that isn't necessary. The good news, we usually bring in an expert to rule out any concern.  

Posted by Debb Janes EcoBroker and Bernie Stea JD, REALTORS® in Clark County, WA (ViewHomes of Clark County - Nature As Neighbors) over 1 year ago

Hi Amanda S. Davidson, buyers and sellers must keep in mind that home inspectors are recording what they see. I've had my share of home inspections go wild, thankfully, doesn't happen often. 

Posted by Beth Atalay, Cam Realty of Clermont FL (Cam Realty and Property Management) over 1 year ago

Is the Pope Catholic, Amanda. I had a contract terminated last year because the inspector said the home had structural deficiencies. $500 later and a thorough inspection by a structural engineer no deficiencies found. The engineer's comment  to my client was " you were the victim of an over-zealous inspector who didn't know what he was talking about."

Posted by Nina Hollander, Your Charlotte/Ballantyne/Waxhaw/Fort Mill Realtor (Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage ) over 1 year ago

I threw a home inspector out of my listing -- not that he left -- The sellers had a new heating system put in and he told the buyers the heater needed to be replaced  I was much younger and very hot headed  -- well I freaked out

Posted by Hannah Williams, Expertise NE Philadelphia & Bucks 215-953-8818 (Re/Max Eastern inc.) over 1 year ago

Good evening Amanda S. Davidson,

Just like Realtors not all inspectors are created equal. Some are very adversarial and forget what their purpose is to check over the home objectively.

Posted by Dorie Dillard CRS GRI ABR, Serving Buyers & Sellers in NW Austin Real Estate (Coldwell Banker United Realtors® ~ 512.750.6899) over 1 year ago

Amanda, I have a few wonderful inspectors, and things in the home do change over time, and can happen overnight.    They are also generalists, and if something needs further attention, the professional in that field should check it out.  GREAT post.

Posted by Joan Cox, Denver Real Estate - Selling One Home at a Time (House to Home, Inc. - Denver Real Estate - 720-231-6373) over 1 year ago

I agree with you that they are not perfect and it is certainly important to find one that you can trust and that knows what they are doing.

Posted by Brian England, MBA, GRI, REALTOR® Real Estate in East Valley AZ (Arizona Focus Realty) over 1 year ago

After a seller we were working with had 2 inspections recently, we know how easy it is to find different concerns from inspectors. The challenge is to find one who is reputable and you can trust.

Posted by Lawrence "Larry" & Sheila Agranoff. Cell: 631-805-4400, Long Island Home and Condo Specialists (The Top Team @ Charles Rutenberg Realty 255 Executive Dr, Plainview NY 11803) over 1 year ago

Hello Amanda,  I always say a inspector will always frind something to justified their bill.  If they can not see something in a wall then can not report it.  Still better to get a inspection no matter waht!


Posted by Will Hamm, "Where There's a Will, There's a Way!" (Hamm Homes) over 1 year ago

Very true, they are human and will make mistakes. No two inspections will say the same thing. Each inspector has their own little speciality they focus on.

Posted by Nick Vandekar, 610-203-4543, Tredyffrin Easttown Realtor, Philly Main Line (Long & Foster Real Estate Inc 610-225-7400) over 1 year ago

Thank you for sharing.

Posted by Golden1 Agents over 1 year ago

Hi Amanda. I know of a few home inspectors that think they are never wrong.  

Posted by Gabe Sanders, Stuart Florida Real Estate (Real Estate of Florida specializing in Martin County Residential Homes, Condos and Land Sales) over 1 year ago

Gabe Sanders good morning, that's never fun. I'm sure you steer clear of them as much as possible.

Posted by Amanda S. Davidson, Alexandria Virginia Homes For Sale (Amanda Davidson Real Estate Group Brokered By eXp Realty) over 1 year ago

I have seen inspectors wrong and have to reinspect and correct their findings. Funny that the home buyers will believe the inspector over everyone else in the transaction.

Posted by Debbie Reynolds, Your Dedicated Clarksville TN Real Estate Agent (Platinum Properties) over 1 year ago

Hi Amanda S. Davidson - We had an inspector that was nicknamed "The Deal Breaker".  He actually inspected the home I purchased!  He was so detailed that we used his report as a blue print for future upgrades etc. 

Posted by Sheri Sperry - MCNE®, (928) 274-7355 ~ YOUR Solutions REALTOR® (Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage) over 1 year ago

Of course they are, just like any professional is sometimes....

Posted by Kristin Johnston - REALTOR®, Giving Back With Each Home Sold! (RE/MAX Realty Center ) over 1 year ago

Good morning Amanda. I love your title and the answer is of course. I like the analogy to a Dr. but often think that there are few really reliable inspectors who have a real background in the trades and is ASHI certified.

Posted by Sheila Anderson, The Real Estate Whisperer Who Listens 732-715-1133 (Referral Group Incorporated) over 1 year ago

Love your title and yes, absolutely, Amanda, we're all human! I do not like the over-zealous inspectors who cost the buyers and/or sellers additional money because they 'think' that something is wrong though. I had to 'can' one of my inspectors for getting too big for his britches and calling out things that were either not code or truly not even issues. 

I believe their fear is being sued for missing something so, they note every single little item and that can be very overwhelming for buyers (and sellers). And, like you, I've found that no two reports are alike on the same property!

Happy Monday, Amanda!

Posted by Debe Maxwell, CRS, Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods ( | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310) over 1 year ago

Good Morning Amanda S. Davidson - Home Inspectors, like any human being is fallible. This is an excellent post and hopefully worthy of feature from AR. 

There's a reason why agents recommend tried and true inspectors who the buyers would endorse. 

Posted by Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP, Selling Homes Changing Lives (DFW FINE PROPERTIES) over 1 year ago

Amanda S. Davidson I have a home inspector that is really good but he uses a lot of "cut and paste" text which I have caught being wrong more than once.  The last time was when he said the driveway had cracks and the homeowner called him on it.  NO CRACKS. Oops

Posted by Jim Cheney, Rincon Valley Realtor 707.494.1055 (Saint Francis Property Santa Rosa, CA) over 1 year ago

Wonderful advice. I've work with so many different inspectors over the years and they all work a little different. Some are very thorough and some are just basic. But they do their best and your right they're not perfect and can't see through walls or concrete.

Posted by Mike Baltierra, Full Service at Your Service Realtor-Eastvale CA (Rise Realty ) 6 months ago