How to choose a Home Inspector.

Home Inspector with Bendix Home Inspection, Inc


     Different home inspectors have varying qualifications, equipment, experience, reporting methods, and yes, different pricing

     In Michigan, inspectors are not required to be licensed. Anyone who has a business card can start advertising as a home inspector. The Mich. Dept of Labor and Economic Growth (DLEG) recommends inspectors be certified, but it's up to the client to research them. The three top certifying organizations are: National Assn of Certified Home Inspectors (NACHI), American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI), and the National  Assn. of Home Inspectors (NAHI)

     Each organization has its own membership requirements. You pass an online test and pay the fee and your a Certified Home Inspector. Certifying an inspector just sets the minimum requirements. Just think, somewhere out there is the worst doctor. Yes he's a doctor, but do you want him treating you.

     That's why you should thoroughly question a home inspectors qualifications. Many home inspectors in Michigan will also have many "Certifications" or trade licenses such as: Residential Builders License, Certified Mold Inspector, Certified Termite Inspector, Training in Well And Septic Inspections, Residential Electric, Certified in Radon Testing, and much more. Most organizations require some form of continuing education. I am certified through NACHI and they require 24 hours a year of continuing education.

    Ten Questions To Ask Your Home Inspector

1. What does your inspection cover?

The inspector should ensure that their inspection and inspection report will meet all applicable requirements in your state if applicable and will comply with a well-recognized standard of practice and code of ethics. You should be able to request and see a copy of these items ahead of time and ask any questions you may have. If there are any areas you want to make sure are inspected, be sure to identify them upfront.

2. How long have you been practicing in the home inspection profession and how many inspections have you completed?

The inspector should be able to provide his or her history in the profession and perhaps even a few names as referrals. Newer inspectors can be very qualified, and many work with a partner or have access to more experienced inspectors to assist them in the inspection.

3. Are you specifically experienced in residential inspection?

Related experience in construction or engineering is helpful, but is no substitute for training and experience in the unique discipline of home inspection. If the inspection is for a commercial property, then this should be asked about as well.

4. Do you offer to do repairs or improvements based on the inspection?

Some inspector associations and state regulations allow the inspector to perform repair work on problems uncovered in the inspection. Other associations and regulations strictly forbid this as a conflict of interest.

5. How long will the inspection take?

The average on-site inspection time for a single inspector is two to three hours for a typical single-family house; anything significantly less may not be enough time to perform a thorough inspection. Additional inspectors may be brought in for very large properties and buildings.

6. How much will it cost?

Costs vary dramatically, depending on the region, size and age of the house, scope of services and other factors. A typical range might be $300-$500, but consider the value of the home inspection in terms of the investment being made. Cost does not necessarily reflect quality. HUD Does not regulate home inspection fees.

7. What type of inspection report do you provide and how long will it take to receive the report?

Ask to see samples and determine whether or not you can understand the inspector's reporting style and if the time parameters fulfill your needs. Most inspectors provide their full report within 24 hours of the inspection.

8. Will I be able to attend the inspection?

This is a valuable educational opportunity, and an inspector's refusal to allow this should raise a red flag. Never pass up this opportunity to see your prospective home through the eyes of an expert.

9. Do you maintain membership in a professional home inspector association?

There are many state and national associations for home inspectors. Request to see their membership ID, and perform whatever due diligence you deem appropriate.

10. Do you participate in continuing education programs to keep your expertise up to date?

One can never know it all, and the inspector's commitment to continuing education is a good measure of his or her professionalism and service to the consumer. This is especially important in cases where the home is much older or includes unique elements requiring additional or updated training.


I hope this information is of assistance to you, and be sure to visit my web site


Rick Capps


Bendix Home Inspection, Inc
37315 Bendix
Wayne, Mi. 48184
Cell: 734-377-5616
Fax: 734-578-0440

Posted by

Rick Capps
Bendix Home Inspection, Inc
37315 Bendix
Wayne, Mi. 48184
Cell: 734-377-5616
Fax: 734-578-0440

Comments (5)

Joan Cox
House to Home, Inc. - Denver Real Estate - 720-231-6373 - Denver, CO
Denver Real Estate - Selling One Home at a Time

My inspector is use mostly is ASHI, but also use some from NAHI.    Too many represent themselves as inspectors, and are not qualified!

May 10, 2010 04:20 AM
Keith Elliott Jr
KEIRE Realty Group - Manassas, VA
Principal Broker/Owner

Hi Rick,

Welcome to Active Rain and congratulations on your first post! The opportunities to learn and network are incredible here.  Best of luck to you!


May 10, 2010 05:38 PM
Rick Capps
Bendix Home Inspection, Inc - Wayne, MI

Hi Joan, Be sure to read my latest post: Should realtors recommend an inspector. It may save you some headaches.

Hi Kieth, Thanks, and i"ll keep blogging.

May 11, 2010 01:17 AM
Jason Rose
123 ConEd LLC -- Michigan real estate continuing education - Farmington Hills, MI

Welcome to ActiveRain, Rick, and congratulations on your first post! This is a great place with lots of knowledgeable people who share tons of helpful information.  I hope you'll enjoy this great website as much as I do.

-- Jason

May 11, 2010 07:31 AM
Sergio Rebollo Jr.
Real Estate TeamMates - Miami, FL

Welcome to ActiveRain. This is a great community to network with others as well a great place to learn from other's experiences and knowledge. I've enjoyed it; I hope you enjoy it as well.

May 17, 2010 03:16 AM