BUSINESS FEATURE Inspect It Austin Veterans transition from armed services to serving homebuyers J oey O’Brien, who descends
BY DARCY SPRAGUE
employees’ combined knowledge and military training to work toward a shared goal sets the company apart. O’Brien said his inspectors are trained to focus on attention to detail when inspecting homes. Reports will include structural issues and other items regulated by the Texas Real Estate Commission but will also point out cosmetic aws and other issues. Most of the time, his inspectors will le their reports immediately after the inspection, before even leaving the property. Inspect It Austin also often oers same-day inspections if the request is placed before noon. “We’ve been at it for over 10 years of just a crazy market, and it hasn’t attened out. … It’s driving the market in a way that these builders have way too much power,” O’Brien said. O’Brien said he does not have an issue with any home companies, but the demand on the market and strain placed on the building process by supply shortages means there are instances in which a building superintendent may try to cut corners. He recommends that all buyers work with real estate agents and inspectors regardless if they are buying a new or existing home. “We’re already familiar with the market and process, so we are empowering you, empowering our clients,” O’Brien said. “We will tell you, ‘No, this is normal.’ or, ‘No, this is not normal.’ … it helps buyers manage their expectations.”
from decades of career military men, did not make his way into the armed services until he was in his 30s and married with kids. O’Brien was working as a homebuilder in the early 2000’s when he saw the writing on the wall about the impending housing market crash of 2008. O’Brien joined the Army and soon became part of a squad protecting a general, including on deployments in Afghanistan. “Just as with building houses, I wanted to do this to the max,” O’Brien said. “It’s kind of my personality. It’s kind of all of our personalities. That’s why I like hiring veterans. So I gave it 210%.” After six years, O’Brien was ready to leave the military. By that time, the housing industry had changed. He decided to turn to home inspecting. O’Brien created Inspect It Austin. The logo is a pentagon, representing the ve main branches of the military. O’Brien only hires military veterans or former homebuilders and has hired someone from the ve branches of the service except the Coast Guard—only because he has not had the opportunity. The company inspects almost 500 hundred houses a month and has 13 employees. O’Brien’s wife and mother both work in the oce. He has also recruited former builders frommost of the largest area home companies. He said it is the
Joey O'Brien designed the logo with ve points to represent the ve main branches of service. (Photos by Darcy Sprague/Community Impact Newspaper)
Inspect It Austin addresses some common questions homebuyers have around when, and if, a person should get an inspection.
WHEN TO GET AN INSPECTION
BUYING AN EXISTING HOME:
BUYING A NEWHOME:
WHEN: Buyers can get an inspection at any stage of construction, once the home is complete and prior to the one-year warranty expiring. WHY: O’Brien said the biggest issue he sees during new home inspections is poor craftsmanship. He said even small issues can worsen over time. “WE’RE ALREADY FAMILIARWITH THE MARKET AND PROCESS, SOWE ARE EMPOWERING YOU, EMPOWERING OUR CLIENTS. WEWILL TELL YOU, ‘NO, THIS IS NORMAL,’ OR, ‘NO, THIS IS NOT NORMAL.’ … IT HELPS BUYERS
WHEN: After you put an oer on a home and have it accepted, most buyers will have the opportunity to have the home inspected before completing the purchasing process. WHY: O’Brien said it can uncover hidden issues and allows a buyer to possibly renegotiate or walk away.
O’Brien spent years building homes. Now he owns Inspect It Austin.
Inspect It Austin Service area: Greater Austin area 512-957-3460 www.inspectitaustin.com
MANAGE THEIR EXPECTATIONS.”
JOEY O’BRIEN, OWNER
SOUTHWEST AUSTIN DRIPPING SPRINGS EDITION • NOVEMBER 2021
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