Engineers: The “How-To Gurus” Larry and Al Ubell

Al and Larry Ubell, the “Gurus of How-To” appear regularly on Leonard Lopate’s radio show on WNYC.

I have been a faithful listener of Leonard Lopate’s radio show on WNYC FM for many years. Since I’m often driving around making sales calls in the middle of the day, I have the luxury of tuning in to Leonard’s show while tooling around Brooklyn, Queens, and Long Island.

One of the regular features on Leonard’s show is a visit by the Gurus of How-To, Lawrence and Alvin Ubell. Their most recent appearance was November 9th.

I highly recommend tuning in to the show (and maybe even posing a question for the Gurus!) either via radio or on the ‘net. Larry and Al present often complicated issues about home inspections, engineering issues, environmental testing topics, and even chats about ugly or not-ugly newfangled flourescent bulbs. They always have great answers for the listeners who call in. If you miss the show, you can always find it in the WNYC Archives.

As much as I know about homes and stuff, heck, I still manage to learn a thing or two from the Ubells. They have a wonderful newsletter, too. I highly recommend it: it’s good reading.

Larry and Al also provide home inspection services to homebuyers through their company Accurate Building Inspectors. If their inspections are anything like the superb information provided on the radio, I imagine any homebuyer could consider herself in very capable hands by hiring them.

If you’ve read my blog and advice before, you know that not only am I a strong advocate in favor of a quality home inspection by a Certified Engineer, but that I also believe the Engineer, ready to inspect immediately you make an offer, should be part of a Homebuyer’s negotiating strategies.

A quality home inspection is part of the process of buying your first home. When you prepare in advance by getting prequalified, and lining up your professional advisors—your attorney and engineer—you negotiate with a Homeowner from a much stronger position. In this market, that can make the difference between getting the home you want at the price you’re willing to pay, and endless frustration with Realtors and Sellers who don’t seem to “get it.”

One other note: if you tune in and love what you hear, don’t miss the opportunity to make a contribution and support public radio.