Inspecting the Inspectors

Buying

Home inspections usually help to uncover any hidden damage or hazardous issues with a home. It's a vital part of the home buying process and is a real estate agent, buyers typically trust us with reputable referrals. Having a list of qualified home inspectors to give out to clients who ask is a given but is it just a matter of experience to determine the best inspector for the job? When compiling a list of home inspectors there are some things we need to consider.

#1. Licensed.

A handful of states don't have any licensing requirements at all so it's important to check with each state and if there are no licensing requirements, qualifications and experience are definitely a must.

#2. Experience.

The Association of home inspectors requires a minimum of 250 inspections in order to qualify for membership. While this is a good many inspections under their belt, I recommend using someone that's done at least 1000 inspections and has 3 to 5 years of full-time experience.

#3. Insured.

Even expert inspectors can make mistakes so it's important to ask for proof of insurance for both any errors and omissions and general liability.

#4. Reviews.

Reviews are the crux of our business these days so it's important to see what past clients say about their experience. You can check with the Better Business Bureau, Yelp, or even Google reviews.

#5. How long will the inspection take and the sample report?

By asking for a sample inspection report it will help gauge how thorough the inspections are. Most reputable inspectors will be happy to provide a sample report. Also, ask about the inspection timeline. A good inspection should take 2 to 4 hours or longer depending on the size of the home. If your inspector runs through a 2000 square-foot house in less than an hour, I guarantee they have missed some things.

Just last month, the Ohio House of Representatives approved a measure to establish a statewide home inspector licensure system to bring much-needed insight into one of the aspects of the home buying process. This will provide consumers with another layer of protection when buying a home.