In this market people are making decisions often without a second showing, which speaks to the difficulty buyers are having finding suitable properties. I recall a couple years back hearing about buyers in Vancouver dragging their building inspector with them house hunting so they could compete with a subject free offer, and while it seems extreme and inconvenient, it sure beats finding out that the plumbing or electrical makes the house uninsurable without further substantial investment. Taking a friend or relying on a relative who knows something about house construction isn't really a safe way of ensuring the integrity of a property and it sure isn't a great way to maintain positive relations if something is missed. (We are fortunate to have a number of great inspectors on the Coast so give me a shout at 604-885-4313 if you'd like a recommendation).
The driving factor in real estate, as in so many purchases in life, is Caveat Emptor or Buyer Beware. I take protecting your investment very seriously, and while it may be a challenge to figure out ways to protect yourself in such a brisk market, it is far better to be safer than sorry when it comes to such a heavy investment as real estate.