Here’s What We’ve Been Up To
2020 has been a most extraordinary year. We could not be more proud of how our HomeGauge family has come together to further the growth of this company, our Inspectors, and the products we offer.
We came into this year with a unified vision of being the best home inspection software company out there. We have heavily invested in our Product, Engineering, and Support Teams, so we may continue providing the tools and services you need to be a successful Home Inspector.
Shifting our discussion to software, we’re excited to announce that after partnering with many Inspectors in our beta program to ensure the best possible product, our new web-based report writer rollout is now beginning. Thank you to all who contribute to our beta programs and the ongoing development of this great new tool.
Here are some highlights delivered since our last update:
- 2x updates to our Android Companion app to provide better photo handling.
- 2x updates to our iOS Companion app to better support our Apple users.
- 2x Desktop Writer updates launching a host of improvements, including a new report print format.
- 1x Web Writer open beta, making it available alongside the Desktop Writer for all customers with a HomeGauge Subscription, including services.
What’s New With HomeGauge?
Your Choice Of Report Writer
HomeGauge has always been known for its highly customizable and flexible desktop report writer. Many of our most loyal customers have been with us for a decade or more because of it, and we are very grateful for them. To support those who prefer a desktop writer, we have continued our commitment to our desktop version.
We also recognize that many Inspectors prefer a tool that is focused on simplicity and speed, and want something that they can take with them while they do their work. For them, we have developed our new Web Writer, and have invested heavily in our Android and iOS apps.
Every Inspector with a HomeGauge subscription or services will have access to both versions of our software, and can use each one as their preferences and circumstances change, at no additional charge.
Desktop Writer Updates
Our teams have been busy tackling your feature requests and addressing bugs as they are reported. Here are some highlights from the last few months:
Improved performance & reliability: More resources than ever have been applied to the desktop writer, as we focused on bringing the app up to date, and knocking down many bugs and Inspector requests. We addressed many long-standing performance issues.
We’ve also added a new report print format.
Web Writer Rollout
This rollout is now beginning, and it will expand access to the Web Writer beta for all HomeGauge Inspectors with an active HomeGauge subscription, including services. To ensure that you have all of the training and support you’d expect from HomeGauge, we will be rolling out access in waves from December 2020 through Q1 of 2021.
Our new Web Writer currently offers a powerful experience in any browser across all device types, including iOS, Mac, Windows, and Android, with dedicated apps coming soon. This version also seamlessly integrates with the Inspector Dashboard, is significantly faster than our classic desktop writer, and allows you to complete your reports from start to finish on your mobile device.
Once the roll out of our Web Writer is complete, any Inspector with an active HomeGauge subscription, including services, will be able to access this new tool as part of their current package.
With this new Web Writer, you can create reports seamlessly across devices, including Apple devices, without the need to synchronize. This means you can start, complete and deliver your report on a single device (including mobile devices).
Just like our desktop version, our web-based report writer will continue to benefit from our ever-growing Engineering team. We have built a destination page for you to monitor our progress with the Web Writer, read our FAQs, and check out our future plans.
Extra Care Evolves
Our Extra Care program has evolved significantly since its launch more than two years ago. It is no longer simply about the homeowners insurance quote, but has grown to be about assuring our Inspectors and their Home Buyers are provided with the resources they need before, during, and after the home inspection.
For Inspectors, Extra Care’s growing offerings add value through early access to betas and extended support hours, product updates, free content, exclusive tailored training and events, and even a website badge. Extra Care also allows Inspectors to provide value to Buyers after the inspection is complete!
In partnership with our Inspector community, the Extra Care offering started as a way for Inspectors to help make the home-buying process easier for Buyers by eliminating the worry around getting a homeowners insurance quote. Over time, Extra Care has become a service where Home Buyers CHOOSE what new home offers are most relevant to them.
Throughout the development of Extra Care, we have maintained our commitment to you that your Buyers are ALWAYS given a clear choice as to whether they wish to take advantage of any offers or services. If they choose not to, we will respect their decision.
It’s a competitive world out there, and Extra Care helps HomeGauge Inspectors stand out in the industry as individuals who have made a commitment to provide their Buyers with extra value in addition to their inspection. In return, we continue our commitment to bringing you the unique benefits that come with Extra Care membership.
Companion App Improvements
This year we have made huge strides in improving the mobile experience for iOS users. We’re happy to announce that our 3rd update for iOS users was released in October 2020, with more updates planned.
That’s not all.
Our Companion app is now included with all HomeGauge subscriptions. If you use the Companion app on Android, you may have noticed that Google changed the rules surrounding the use of third party camera apps. To make life easier for all, we decided to double our cloud transfer limit to 600MB at no additional charge. We’re also working on enhancements to the Android app so that you have better control over the quality of the images you upload.
For those of you that use the same phone or tablet for work and family, you no longer need to pick a different camera for each occasion. Take the picture using your preferred app and HomeGauge Companion will handle the rest, resizing as necessary.
ScheduleNow is well on its way to becoming HomeGauge’s unified online scheduling solution. Recently we added even more options for you to allow bookings on your website, including the option for your customers to provisionally book a time slot that you can then approve to make the appointment official.
ScheduleNow will replace our Classic scheduler and now incorporates updated ‘request appointment’ functionality. Feedback we’ve received confirms that this is undoubtedly simpler and faster for you and your customers.
Check out a recent webinar about ScheduleNow, made by our HomeGauge Product Team.
Learn more about what ScheduleNow can do for you and your business here.
Website and SEO Products, More Pricing Options
We know that COVID-19 has likely impacted your business, and our HomeGauge team wanted to do something to give you more options. Our frontline Web & Support Team members, who have fielded many calls regarding how the current situation is impacting our industry, helped us all pull together a number of options.
For our Website and hosting packages, we have introduced extended payment plans to reduce upfront costs by spreading payments out over three or six months. These payment options apply to a new Website Build, and our Website Build packages bundled with a year of Managed Hosting or a year of SEO (Search Engine Optimization). Payment plans are also available for The Complete Package and The Total Package, which include a year of the HomeGauge Subscription, and a Website Build with a year of either Managed Hosting or SEO.
We are also working closely with a number of you to better understand how HomeGauge can help you generate more inspection business. With that said, we are exploring new Web and SEO products that can help you market and grow your business. Be sure to keep an eye out for future product updates that highlight these exciting new Web and SEO offerings focused on your business growth. We are eager to share these with you!
Extended Customer Support Hours
HomeGauge has always stood out by offering the highest level of support in the industry. We receive and support thousands of requests a month through our phone lines, email, and our live online chat feature.
After a phased rollout to our Extra Care Inspectors, HomeGauge is now providing ALL HomeGauge Inspectors with even more support! The extended hours for our live online chat and phone support are now 9am-8pm ET, Monday through Friday.
Other Notable Improvements
- Our larger franchise customer solutions have been updated and these users are now able to take advantage of more of the outstanding benefits we’ve been offering the rest of our users.
- We made several under-the-hood and user experience updates to make it easier for your customers to get their reports quickly and easily. A couple of examples of what you likely noticed include better printing of agreements and receipts, improved payment screen formatting to improve usability, and customer comment was added as a prefix within CRL to provide a clear distinction between the comments of a customer and those of an Inspector.
- More details on all of our recent releases can be found at:
With the expansion of our Teams and offerings as we approach our 20th anniversary, HomeGauge now has more Inspectors and more Team Members than ever before. It is these partnerships that help us all grow, and we owe our complete thanks to each and every one of you!
To reach out to us with your next big idea, you can contact the HomeGauge Product Team (we regret that we cannot answer every suggestion, but we promise that we read everything).
Here’s to a big year in 2021!