HB 978 is flawed
March 06, 2007
To the editor:

Representative Mike Parson has introduced legislation (HB 978) that he contends will protect the consumer in regard to the qualifications of home inspectors.

This bill is heavily supported by the Missouri Association of Realtors who, along with Rep. Parson, fail to publicly acknowledge that there is a conflict of interest in allowing the people who sell real estate to have any influence over those who are supposed to inspect it - and report upon it - fairly and accurately to the consumer.

A few years back, when homes in Missouri were selling for $30,000 to $50,000 - the real estate salesman was earning a 6% commission. Today, with the houses selling for $300,000 and up...the salesmen still makes the same percentage.

With $18,000 in commissions on the line, the real estate salesman wants to be the one to recommend to the buyer which home inspector to hire. He also wants his lobbyist in Jefferson City to tell Mr. Parson and other elected officials how these home inspectors are to be governed.

There is a conflict of interest built into this system and educated home buyers throughout the country, as well as Missouri, are beginning to see it for themselves.

Home inspectors should be disinterested third parties with absolutely no interest in whether the house sells or not. His report should be complete and objective and he should not be dependent upon future referrals from the same real estate agents for future business.

The state of Massachusetts has gone as far as to prohibit real estate salespeople from referring home inspectors. If the Missouri Association of Realtors and Representative Parson were truly interested in the welfare of the consumer, his bill would include this requirement.

I encourage every Missourian to contact their state representatives and let them know that they want home inspectors to be free from the control of the real estate industry and its political lobbyists in Jefferson City. Tell your representatives that you expect them to stop the efforts of the real estate industry in this state from controlling home inspectors in our state.

Jim Bushart
President, Missouri Chapter of the National Association of Certified Home Inspectors

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