How Home Inspection Certification Can Help You

In a lot of Canadian provinces and American states, home inspection certification is not required. The guy (or girl) who shows up at your door to inspect your home may not have had any training in the workings of your house, and that can put YOU at risk.

Hop on the internet and look up “home inspection training”, and you will come across a multitude of sites that will take your money and teach you to be a home inspector. But what are they actually teaching you? Are they affiliated with any of the associations that represent the legitimate home inspection organizations? Or do they just show you a few pictures of house systems, give you a quick recognition test, and send you out to the real world?

In Canada, each province (each state in the U.S.) has an organization that decides what qualifications and training an individual should have to become certified. Most reputable organizations will abide by a set of rules that must be followed by its members. These rules are called the Standards of Practice, and are set out to ensure that the purchaser of the inspection, and the home inspector, are both aware of what is required of each party involved.

Any company or school that offers home inspection certification will insist upon a recognized course of study, and adherence to the standards of practice set out by the American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI), and the Canadian Association of Home and Property Inspectors (CAHPI). The premier course of study in Canada and the U.S. is theHome Inspection Training Program by the engineering firm of CarsonDunlop in Toronto.

By completing ten comprehensive modules covering every major system in the home, the wannabe inspector will obtain a thorough knowledge of foundations, exteriors, roofs, electrical, plumbing, heating, ventilation and air conditioning. Then there’s the exam, a four hour proctored exam where the passing grade is 75 percent. The same information is taught online by InterNachi, the International Association of Certified Home Inspectors, in a slightly different format, with an 80 percent passing grade requirement.

Regardless of where the inspector acquires his certification, he must continue to upgrade his skills each year through continuing education programs, and any reputable association will require a certain number of educational credit hours as part of their membership requirements. These courses are sometimes taught by the associations themselves, or are an endorsed third party course at a recognized school or college.

When you need a home inspector, whether it’s for the purchase or sale of your home, or an annual maintenance checkup,make sure he has been properly trained and certified. If he hasn’t been, he’s probably just looking around.


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