Continuing Education and Building Trust

By
Home Inspector with Clayton Inspection Service, Inc.

Last February the East Tennessee Chapter of ASHI had a 2 -day seminar for home inspector continuing education. We had a pretty good turn out, because most everyone was running around in a panic trying to get their hours before the deadline.

Since the licensing term is two years, most of us do not have to worry until 2010. But how many are going to wait till the last minute again? I guess a lot.

On the State web site that shows licenses, you can check on just how many hours of continuing education an inspector has. I just checked mine. I set for the next renewal period, plus about half again as many as needed.

I know a lot of inspectors opt for the free on-line sessions that get some hours. That's OK, but they are missing out on one of the best reasons to go to a Chapter meeting or educational seminar. They are missing out on meeting and the live feedback you get when you are in a room with a bunch of other inspectors. They are also missing out on developing friendships.

Case in point: An inspector friend of mine called last Thursday. Seems he had an EIFS inspections to do on Friday or Saturday. But his Delmhorst moisture meter had died. He knew I had one, and asked if he could borrow it. Of course I said yes. I left it on my front porch and he came by and picked it up, and was able to get his inspection done.

Do you think I would have lent my $400 moisture meter to someone I didn't know? Or the time I went into the hospital with a kidney stone? My wife was able to call a friend that could cover my inspections. That's pretty risky if you don't have a good idea what someone is like. Getting to know your peers at Chapter meetings is a great way to develop trusting relationships.

Comments (9)

Paul Duffau
Safe@Home Inspections, LLC in SE Washington - Asotin, WA
Caring for People, Educating about Homes

Jack,

One of the reasons I do alot online or through books on my own is I am so darn far from anything.  It's a 2.5 hour drive to get to my nearest chapter and, with the weather that we've had, that's a challanging drive.

Next nearest is my choice of Seattle or Boise - I lose a day on either end for travel.  It's a pain.

Feb 09, 2009 11:48 AM
Jack Feldmann
Clayton Inspection Service, Inc. - Knoxville, TN

Paul, I understand. We used to drive from Knoxville to Nashville for our quarterly meetings (a 2.5 hour drive). Some of the guys even  had further to drive. That was one of the reasons we started the east Tennessee Chapter. We have inspectors from Knoxville, Chattanooga (1.5 hrs away) and the Johnson City/Bristol area (1.5 - 2 hrs away) make the drive.

Maybe you should look into starting a group in your area. Even if it's just a casual get together for breakfast or something, it's a start.

 

Feb 09, 2009 11:57 AM
Jack Gilleland
Home Inspection and Investor Services, Clayton - Clayton, OH

Jack - Every one or two man shop/business has to have back-up.  I have 2 people in the area that I would trust to help me out in a pinch.  Hard to let go sometimes to.

Feb 09, 2009 02:13 PM
Jim Mushinsky
Centsable Inspection - Framingham, MA

Hi Jack, glad to hear about the benefits of the local meetings.  I heard something about ASHI and NAHI...  any talks in your area about those two organizations working together?

I like the meetings better than online, and not just because MA does not approve any online CE credits.  I feel there is a distinct difference between hearing an inspectors comments/opinion vs reading it online.

Feb 10, 2009 04:15 PM
Jack Feldmann
Clayton Inspection Service, Inc. - Knoxville, TN

JIm,

The talks between ASHI and NAHI are going on at the National Level. I don't think we have that many NAHI members in East Tennessee.

Any home inspector is welcome to attend our meetings. We have several HITA (Home Inspectors of Tennessee) members that attend, as well as some that don't belong to any organization. 

Our meetings are all about education and not party affiliation.

Feb 10, 2009 09:00 PM
Jeff Remas
Advanced Code Group - Delray Beach, FL
Inspector Jeff

You can't compete with the live feedback and information shared by those who gather together.  Online is a convenience but you are right, you do miss out.

Feb 21, 2009 03:04 AM
James Quarello
JRV Home Inspection Services, LLC - Wallingford, CT
Connecticut Home Inspector

Jack, Your points about chapter meetings and education echo my feelings on these subjects. Our chapter meetings a are all about education and camaraderie. I have done the same with borrowing equipment and asking advice of my fellow chapter members. The ASHI chapter I belong to (SNEC) has a great bunch of knowledgeable guys who are very willing to share their experience with other members. It is a great atmosphere and we all learn from each other.

Feb 27, 2009 10:14 PM
Andrew Haslett
Van Warren Home Inspections, NAHI CRI - Fort Knox, KY
Heartland of Kentuckynulls, Best Home Inspector

Just a short comment on Paul's dilemma with his distance to meetings.

There are some inspectors in Western Kentucky who drive 3 + hours to get to meetings. I wouldn't want to be one of them, but they do make it happen. I'm not sure that they lose any time. I think they do the drive both ways on the same day.

Just a thought.

Mar 12, 2009 06:37 AM
Jack Feldmann
Clayton Inspection Service, Inc. - Knoxville, TN

We used to drive to Nashville (2 1/2 - 3 hours) for meetings. It made a long day, but we shared rides and found the driving time actually helped develop friendships.

Mar 12, 2009 11:31 PM