Property inspections are a fairly straightforward process, which over the years technology has made even easier. The days of using a polaroid camera to take photos of the property and then faxing in the report are thankfully long gone. Now as video conferencing has advanced and been widely adopted, this technology has changed the process of conducting a property inspection so we can accomplish more in a shorter amount of time.
Recently, Land Gorilla announced the introduction of Remote Inspections. This revolutionary, patent-pending process uses live streaming video to connect an inspector and onsite property contact to conduct a remote inspection. The outcome is a professionally completed inspection report with the same or better checks and balances compared to a traditional onsite inspection. Remote inspections are executed with extreme accuracy and exponentially improved speed and safety. Let’s dig into the specifics and find out how it works.
What is a remote inspection?
A remote inspection offers a new and safe way to document the progress of work on a property without the need for an inspector to physically visit the property. To complete an inspection without a physical visit can be accomplished with three things: A property contact, their smartphone or tablet for live streaming video, and a trained professional Land Gorilla remote inspector.
The property contact and the Land Gorilla Remote Inspector connect via streaming video and the inspector directs the property contact where to go, in the same manner that the inspector would conduct an inspection if they were there in person. The Remote Inspector is able to perform the same functions as a physical visit. The entire inspection process is simple and typically takes under 30 minutes.
Why Are Remote Inspections Valuable Now?
Land Gorilla has always invested in technology to make all aspects of construction and renovation lending faster, safer, and more efficient. The technology behind Land Gorilla Remote Inspections was developed for this purpose, and with the introduction of shelter-at-home orders throughout various areas in the United States as well as the instruction to practice social distancing in this time of COVID-19, it became immediately imperative to introduce this unique solution. This tool allows business to continue while reducing the amount of exposure between people.
Even beyond the current COVID-19 crisis, Remote Inspections will become a permanent solution for construction and renovation lenders. The speed at which a Remote Inspection can be completed is unmatched by any other inspection solution. Lenders actively working to decrease their draw timeline will see immediate benefit from Remote Inspections. There is no need to wait on an inspector’s schedule or for them to travel out to the property. Remote Inspections are quickly scheduled directly with the property contact and a completed inspection report is delivered to the lender within 4 hours of the scheduled inspection.
Are remote inspections a safe alternative to traditional onsite inspections?
Land Gorilla Remote Inspections not only offer the same safeguards as traditional onsite inspections but also include additional safeguards that are absent with traditional site inspections. Security standards are in place to protect the privacy of the homeowner and prevent malicious actors from providing fraudulent or spoofed data to lenders, appraisers, and appraisal management companies. This process does not rely on photo metadata or live GPS location data, both of which can be spoofed. Instead, the remote inspection process verifies location using image data from third-party resources such as Google Street View, County and City records, and previous Lender appraisal reports.
The entire remote inspection is recorded and can be fully audited should the legitimacy of the inspection come into question. Creating a standardized process ensures information security of the data involved is subject to a repeatable and auditable process.
Customers find that Land Gorilla Remote Inspections are not only a safe alternative, but can be completed more efficiently with a Quality Control audit of the video. Implementing a secure remote inspection process is critical to minimizing your construction lending risk.
Remote Inspections vs Virtual Inspections
There are some key differences between a virtual inspection and remote inspection. Virtual inspections rely on the property contact acting as the inspector, doing a self-inspection by taking photos, and then use geocoding metadata to confirm the picture location. Relying on this method is extremely risky, as it is extraordinarily easy to edit the location data on digital images which is a huge fraud risk. Photos, even if used in conjunction with geolocation metadata, are not considered a safe, reliable method for verifying the location. Currently there is no way to verify the photos are of the property. A malicious actor could easily fool virtual inspection tools that attempt to use a photo’s metadata to verify the location and time a photo was taken. A malicious actor looking to abuse a virtual inspection tool may look, for example, to gain a higher appraisal value for their home than a traditional appraiser would assign.
Virtual inspections, if not completed properly, also risks a slow down of the process as the property contact will have to go back and take extra photos if the correct things were not captured the first time.
As a more reliable solution, Remote Inspections has the property contact (for example, the homeowner) acting as the intermediary for the remote inspector. On a live video conference, the Remote Inspector instructs the property contact what areas of the property to capture, providing them real-time feedback as they walk the property. The property contact’s identification is verified, and the exterior of the property and views of the street and neighboring properties are also captured. Land Gorilla uses third party resources such as Google Street View, county or city records, and/or a previously supplied appraisal report to verify the property location with the recorded inspection video.
At the conclusion of the remote inspection session, the inspector has a recorded video asset, leaving an auditable digital trail. Using the recorded asset, the remote inspector creates a professional inspection report that is delivered to the lender or other requesting party.
Ready to Get Started with Remote Inspections?
Remote Inspections are a game-changer as traditional onsite property inspections have become difficult or impossible to perform due to public health and safety concerns. As Jessica Petrovich from Ideal Manufactured Homes noted, “The experience was very easy and the remote inspector helped with the entire process. The remote inspection was much faster than a traditional onsite inspection as there was no need to wait for the inspector’s schedule. It helped us and the buyer/borrower to complete our transaction quickly. Remote inspections are a great use of technology and I look forward to seeing more of this in the future.”
If you would like to learn more, simply fill out this form and a Land Gorilla representative will reach out to you with more information.