And, the positive response was almost immediate. On November 17, Popular Mechanics published an article on its Web site titled “Thinking of Springing for a Foreclosed Home? Check for these 5 Problems First.” It was based on ASHI’s recently released Consumer Foreclosure Study and discussions with Grant during the visit. The article opened as follows:
“Foreclosed homes can sell for a fraction of their original worth, and may seem like a steal: a fixer-upper at a low price. But Brion Grant, president of the American Society of Home Inspectors, tells PM that while there are plenty of good deals to be found on the foreclosure market, these homes also can harbor unpleasant surprises — including wild boars. Here are the most common problems that might mean a foreclosed home is a money pit in the long run.”
Media Tour highlights
Chereso described the format for the meetings and reported on conversations with specific editors.
“Following brief introductions, editors were provided with an ASHI press kit and highlights of the consumer foreclosure study. The format for each meeting was casual and an open discussion, which allowed more time to discuss upcoming/future editorial opportunities. Overall, editors were extremely interested in providing their readers with tips on how to hire the best home inspector as well as accompanying an ASHI member on an onsite home inspection. Lastly, all the editors expressed interest in receiving a copy of the monthly ASHI Reporter.”
Good Housekeeping – The editor expressed interest in the ASHI Virtual Home Inspection and how this tool might be shared with the publication’s readers.
Popular Mechanics – Roy Berendshon was especially interested in the foreclosure study; new trends for home inspections (Radon testing, IAQA, Thermal Imaging, etc.); the confusion of an appraisal versus a home inspection; as well as the work ASHI is involved with regarding the HR4776 Bill.
He contacted Brion Grant the day after the briefing to talk more about the importance of a home inspection during a foreclosure. The resulting article posted on November 17, 2008.
Country Living – Several editors were briefed. They were interested in the issues readers should be aware of concerning the inspection of “older” homes and in the questions consumers should ask their home inspectors as well as how to select an inspector who is right for their particular needs.
Green issues like indoor air quality, energy efficiency, mold and the money saved from an inspection were of particular interest, too.
This Old House –Two editors spent more than an hour with Grant discussing several opportunities.
Family Circle – The editor is working on a home remodeling series in the spring. Aside from the importance of a home inspection during home remodeling, she was interested in the cost savings of a home maintenance inspection.
Consumer Reports – This was the first time ASHI met with a Consumer Reports editor. There were several topics of interest, including the HR4776 Bill.
The media tour is an annual event to renew and create relationships with editors for publications whose readers are interested in home inspections.
The Consumer Foreclosure Survey press release, which was distributed during the tour, is available on the ASHI Web site (www.ASHI .org) under Media & Advertising. ASHI chapters and members are encouraged to use ASHI’s press releases to build interest in their local markets. Questions? Contact Sandy Bourseau, email@example.com or 847-954-3179.
We Speak House directly to a Realtor® board in your neighborhood
Four times a year, the executive directors or presidents of local Realtor boards receive a custom e-newsletter from ASHI, compliments of the ASHI Public Relations Committee.
Sent to 1,500 contacts on local boards, it states its purpose in the introduction:
“You are receiving this e-mail from the American Society of Home Inspectors, Inc.® (ASHI) because we hope to establish a mutually beneficial relationship between our organizations. Please share this information with your members and associates.”
Past topics included the following:
- Do your clients deserve an inspector who respects their rights?
- Home inspectors assess the Housing Rescue Bill.
- Just when you think you’ve see it all (Postcards from the Field)
Chapter public relation representatives, who have shared their names and contact information with the public relations committee, receive a copy of the e-newsletter and a list of the contacts in their state who receive the e-mail.
Questions? Contact Sandy Bourseau, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Reporter knows who to call
When the consumer reporter for the TV station WATE had questions about the construction of a recently remodeled porch, he called on ASHI Certified Inspector Jack Feldmann.
Feldmann said he made sure to mention ASHI in the interview, which appeared on the station’s Web site as well as on air.
His contribution to the story “Karns couple has porch re-modeled after re-modeling,” included:
“Jack Feldmann, with Clayton Inspection Service, is a member of the American Society of Home Inspectors. He didn’t examine the Mitchell’s home, but he knows what’s required when a porch is rebuilt.
‘Footers are really important because they’re the basic foundation. It’s what holds things up and keeps it from sinking into the ground. Concrete is usually used and it goes under posts, or foundations of homes or decks. It’s kind of builder 101. You put a footer under something,’ Feldmann said.
“Without the footer, what happens?” 6 On Your Side asked. ‘It can fail. The structure could sink down or fall,’ Feldmann answered.”