Important Information about Home Inspections
Since 2009, homeowners finally obtained a degree of protection against unscrupulous home inspectors, who prior to that were not required to be licensed or registered, could limit the amount of their liability to the cost of the inspection, etc. Well, due to the governor’s veto, we will return to backwards-ism on 7/1/13.
Here are the documents I promised explaining the latest information I have received as of 6/5/13. Below that is my page as it was originally put up in 2009.
During the 2009 Legislative Session, the Kansas Legislature passed legislation that requires home inspectors to register with a new state board, regulates the home inspection industry and prohibits home inspectors from limiting their liability for errors and omissions to less than $2,000 per home inspection.
This statute went into effect on January 1, 2010, and it is very important that you review this summary to familiarize yourself with the major provisions of this legislation that affects the real estate industry and your transaction.
All home inspectors must be registered with the Kansas Home Inspectors Registration Board (KHIRB) to conduct home inspections. If a home inspector does not register with KHIRB, they will be prohibited from performing home inspections. It is your responsibility to ensure that the home inspector you choose is on the list of individuals that are registered as a home inspector with KHIRB. You can access the list of registered home inspectors at http://www.ksinspectors.org/.
Under no circumstances can we provide you the name of a home inspector who is not registered under the Act. If a home inspector is not registered under the act, they are acting in violation of state law and you will be unable to rely on the accuracy, quality or reliability of any home inspection reports prepared by that individual. In order to register as a home inspector under the Act, an individual will need to fulfill several requirements specified by KHIRB to ensure that they are qualified to provide home inspection services. These various requirements will vary depending on the experience of the individual applicant or home inspector, and can be reviewed in detail at KHIRB’s website at http://www.ksinspectors.org/.
All home inspectors must be liable for up to $2,000 in errors & omissions for defects they negligently failed to spot during a home inspection. After January 1, 2010, any provision in a home inspection agreement that purports to limit liability for errors and omissions to less than $2,000 per home inspection is void and unenforceable. Please note that this is not a warranty and a home inspector is not required to guarantee their services for up to $2,000 per home inspection. Under the legislation, a home inspector is only liable for those defects that a reasonable inspector would have spotted under the standards of practice followed by the home inspector. As in other civil disputes, you will bear the burden to provide the home inspector negligently failed to note the defect in the home inspection report.
Under K.S.A. 58-4510, certain individuals are not registered to register as home inspectors under the Act unless they are performing an inspection of the entire home. This statute enacted by the Kansas Legislature contains a long list of contractors and licensed professionals who do not need to register as a home inspector under the act. By enacting this exemption, the Kansas Legislature chose to exempt individuals from registration under the Act if they are not actively advertising or marketing themselves as “home inspectors” to the general public. However, an individual exempted from this statute will need to register as a “home inspector” if they hold themselves out to be a “home inspector” or provide services that are outside of the normal scope of their license or profession.
For a complete list of the individuals who are not required to register under the act, please review the provisions of K.S.A. 58-4510. Following is a non-exhaustive list of the most common individuals who are exempted from registration under the act:
1) a contractor or tradesman performing an inspection or evaluation of less than three components of a home (i.e. appliance repairmen, electricians, HVAC contractors, plumbers, roofers, etc.);
2) an individual licensed as an architect while acting within the scope of that license;
3) an individual licensed as a professional engineer while acting within the scope of that license;
4) an individual licensed as a real estate appraiser while acting within the scope of that license;
5) an individual licensed as a real estate broker or salesperson while acting within the scope of that license;
6) an individual licensed as an insurance adjuster while acting within the scope of that occupation;
7) an individual licensed as an insurance agent while acting within the scope of that license; and
8) an individual providing services as a pest exterminator or chemical application while acting within the scope of that occupation and not providing services which would constitute a home inspection.
There is a very long list of items the home inspector is not required to inspect. For a complete list, you must review the Home Inspection Standards of Practice at http://www.ksinspectors.org/. You should also ask your home inspector if their inspection is limited to the state-mandated limits, or if it goes above and beyond.
Please acknowledge with your signature below that you have reviewed this document, understand it, and have researched and drawn your own conclusions as to what types of inspections you would like to have in your real estate transaction, and that you have chosen all your inspectors based upon your own research, and not upon the recommendation or referral of any real estate licensee. Under advice from legal counsel, we cannot (and have not) explain to you the Home Inspection Standards of Practice, become involved in the home inspection process, or recommend to you what should or should not be repaired.
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