How much money can I make as a Home Inspector?
Most home inspectors are sole proprietors. There are franchise opportunities
available, and larger firms do hire inspectors as employees.
An independent home inspector can perform up to roughly 500
inspections per year. ASHI's most current Business Operations
Study published in 2011,showed that full-time inspectors do
an average of 209 inspections per year at an average inspection
fee of $360. At $360 per inspection, 209 inspections would
result in a gross income of $75,240. These
numbers include full and part-time home inspectors.
A full-time inspector would typically do 300 to 400 inspections per year. Average
inspection fees in 2011are roughly $360. Inspectors performing
350 inspections per year can gross $126,000.
Do I need a license to do home inspections?
Currently, 30 states require some form of licensing. The state
of Iowa does require licensing for home inspection.
How big does a market have to be to support
me as an Inspector?
500 house sales per year within your travel
area (by car) is probably an absolute minimum. You can get
information about the number of house sales from your local
real estate board.
Do I need insurance?
You will want to insure your vehicle and
property, of course. You should also have liability insurance
in case you damage a house or cause an injury.
You may also want to purchase Errors and Omissions Insurance
that protects you if a client accuses you of missing a problem
in the home.
There is other insurance to consider
as well, including Workers Compensation, health, dental and disability.
What tools do I need?
The basic tools include a ladder, flashlight, set of screwdrivers, electrical
tester, camera and moisture meter. There are tool companies
that specialize in providing tools to home inspectors.
What kind of reporting do I have to do?
Whether you use technology to create electronic reports or prefer a paper-based approach, the reports should be concise and easy to understand. They should describe both significant issues and minor items in proper context. Perspective is important.
Compare samples for paper reports and electronic reports. Explore features and benefits of electronic reporting systems.
Most vendors will provide free trials, training and support to help you get started.
Do home inspectors work part-time, full-time,
for themselves or someone else?
New home inspectors can begin working full or part-time, for
themselves or within an established business. They are also
franchise opportunities in the home inspection profession.
You have an opportunity to work in a way that meets your requirements.
Lots of home inspectors, for example, choose to perform only
4 or 5 inspections per week.
Can I start my own business?
Absolutely! Many home inspectors work independently
in their own business. If you have little previous background
you may want to buy an existing
consider a franchise, or look at partnering with someone who has business
Can I do this part-time?
The field has both full-time and part-time practitioners.
It is ideal for a retired, or semi-retired individual or
anyone who wants to work part-time.
What does the future look like for this
Pre-purchase inspections are becoming a common part of every
real estate transaction. While accurate numbers are hard to
come by, it is estimated that more than 70% of resale homes
are currently inspected. Over the next decade, that number
is expected to approach 100%. Some home inspectors expand their
knowledge and offer inspections for asbestos, carbon monoxide,
water quality, lead, air quality testing and radon to name
a few. Many owners of new homes also engage professional home
Home inspection will also evolve as construction
methods and materials change. The recent popularity of
floor heating, steel framing and use of insulated concrete
forms are some examples.
With additional training,
some home inspectors move into the commercial field.
The opportunities in home inspection are
significant and will grow as this young profession matures.
Do home inspectors only look at residential dwellings?
Home Inspections include one- to four-family dwellings. Some
home inspectors expand their business to include commercial
What are the physical demands of the home inspection field?
Home inspectors typically work during the day. The job involves
standing, with some squatting, bending, reaching, climbing
ladders and crawling into small spaces. The work of a home
inspector is primarily visual.
Because of the limited demands of this work, this career
appeals to people not well-suited to physically rigorous
What skills do I need to be successful?
Home inspectors need a broad technical knowledge of the systems
of a house, good reasoning abilities and well-developed
in a customer service-oriented profession. They enjoy working independently
have an interest in how things work. Their ability to communicate
and present themselves professionally are keys to success.