If you’re like many people, you probably think home inspectors need a background in construction or a related field. It does help, but it’s by no means necessary.
Certified home inspectors come from many different backgrounds. Although the industry is rather male dominated, women are staking their claim and coming up quickly through the ranks.
If you want to become a home inspector, the only thing standing in your way is a decision. Here are just a few types of people who have something important that could benefit customers and the whole industry.
Stay-at-Home Moms and Dads
Who could be better suited for the home inspection industry than a stay-at-home mom or dad? Hardly anyone. You don’t need a background in construction to take on this vibrant field and carve out your own niche. If you own a home, chances are you’ve got a decent skill set waiting to be developed.
Home-centric moms and dads who work for the family instead of away in an office or at a job site still tackle the same projects as everyone else. Maybe you get project inspiration from Pinterest or DIY renovation TV shows. And maybe you already put it to good use improving your home.
With an interest in the way houses are designed and built, as well as what goes into renovation projects, you have the seed of knowledge, which you can grow. Home inspector education helps you connect the dots, fill in the blanks and start your own business. Even better you can work as little or as much as you like.
Certified Public Accountants
If you think an office career contraindicates working in the field as a home inspector, think again. There’s a lot more to the industry than searching through homes for material defects and summarizing it into a report. Business chops are a major plus, and a lack thereof leads to a large number of business failures.
As you probably know from helping clients, small businesses come with not-so-small business responsibilities. Accountants have a leg up on people who aren’t especially skilled in bookkeeping, taxes and other financial concerns. Everything else, you can learn.
ASHI Member and columnist, Pete Wilson, explains that of the many fresh and new faces that graduate and enter the industry, very few remain in business for more than one year. He explains that many people enter the industry with almost no business knowledge or experience. Oftentimes, it “results in a business failure and all of the negative ramifications associated with this.”
Do you mind getting dirty? Are you nervous about squeezing into tight places? Not if you’re a mechanic. Although cars and houses have little in common, the mindset that helps you succeed while shimmying under a vehicle is a boon when it comes to navigating narrow attics and shallow crawl spaces.
Mechanics also have a built-in understanding of some basic tools used in home inspections. For example, electric testers help you suss out a vehicle’s faulty circuit and find electrical defects in a home.
A mechanically minded person should have little trouble learning about the home inspection industry and putting that knowledge to good use in the field. You probably have some of the tools in your tool belt already.
Secretaries and Administrative Assistants
Why shouldn’t a secretary or administrative assistant switch gears and become a certified home inspector? You can study on your own time, such as after 5 o’clock and on weekends. And you probably have one of the most important skills that every home inspector needs: organization.
It might seem like a stretch, but an organizational dynamo in the office can streamline a home inspection business until it’s a well-oiled machine. Paired with home inspection education, you could be one of the most well-rounded inspectors in your area.
As with accounting skills, organization isn’t something that’s learned overnight. The best organizers have honed their abilities through years of practice. Once you have your certification in hand, you’ll be ahead of newly minted inspectors who don’t know how to run an office.
This one probably doesn’t surprise you. Certainly, construction workers are some of the most well-suited people who enter the home inspection field.
With a good base of knowledge already under your belt, your home inspection education will paint a clearer picture of the whole house. You might have worked primarily with framing, concrete, drywall or electrical in the past. ICA School will teach you the rest.
A background in construction may help you work through training a little more quickly than someone starting from scratch. Consider it a bonus. As a matter of fact, watch this video and meet Joe:
Project managers are the whole package. They have experience with home systems and can write a budget. They’ve worked with architects and appliance installers. They know how to build out a schedule and understand the inner workings of a construction project. They know a little about everything.
If you’re a construction project manager, home inspecting is a perfect next career. You might take on inspections as a sideline, plan to change careers further down the road, or make a total career switch right now.
However you approach it, the professionalism and comfort level you’ve gained will work to your benefit as a certified home inspector. Trust is an important element in any customer/inspector relationship. With your wealth of experience, you’re on the right track.
Who makes the best type of home inspector? That’s a trick question. There was at a time when most, if not all, inspectors hailed from construction or a related field. With widely available education and high-tech tools, anyone with the desire can hang out a shingle and get to work.
If you’re ready to embark on a new career, there’s no better time than right now. Enroll today with ICA School. On your own timeframe, whether it’s a few weeks or months, you’ll be ready to start your next life chapter.