Inspection Certification Associates prides itself on hiring the best instructors in the home inspection field, so that you can get the best learning experience possible.
To aid in the continued growth of your own business, we wanted to share with you one of our many success stories. We’d like to introduce Patrick Hardy, an ICA Graduate and instructor who runs H & H Home Inspections in Cocoa, FL.
How did you decide to become a home inspector?
A little over 2 years ago while at a barbecue, a realtor friend suggested that I should become a home inspector. I had been in construction for quite a long time, and knew the market was in need of home inspectors. I went home and did some research and before I knew it, I had enrolled into ICA’s program because they had the best quality training. After graduating I immediately took the national home inspector exam and passed with what the proctor said was one of the highest grades she had seen.
Please tell us about yourself and your company?
I started my business just over 2 years ago now with me as the only inspector. After 2 years I now have 8 inspectors working for me. I am also in the process of actively recruiting 2 more inspectors. We offer full home inspections, four-point inspections, wind mitigation inspections, WDO (termite), mold assessing, lead testing, asbestos, radon, air and water quality, 203k consulting, and commercial condition assessments. In 2 years of service, we have performed several thousand inspections. On average, we do several hundred inspections a month.
Where do you expect your company to be in the next 2-3 years?
I would love to have at least 3 more district offices in the west coast of Florida, north and south with a staffing of at least 30 inspectors, 4 office managers, 4 field managers, and a full time IT tech. I would like our company to have a greater influence with the legislature at the state level for better regulation of our industry.
As a graduate of Inspection Certification Associates, can you share with prospective home inspectors a little bit about your experience with the ICA online home inspection course?
My experience with ICA has been a good one. As you can quite obviously ascertain, I have high expectations. ICA’s course was beautifully laid out in an efficient and comprehensive manner. The information was thorough and I could tell the instructor had an enormous amount of experience and knowledge. They were quick to answer any questions I have ever had and have always been there to help whether it is has been with inspecting or with the business growth. ICA’s main focus is to ensure we succeed as inspectors and I truly believe they are passionate about that.
Would you say the online home inspection course from ICA did a good job of preparing you for the state exam?
Yes! There was more than enough information on the ICA platform to prepare me for the National Home Inspector exam. I easily passed the first time.
Can you tell us a little bit about what that transition was like to go from just performing inspections on your own to expanding to a multi-inspector firm?
I realized many things very quickly when I started my business. First, if you are good at your job, professional, and answer your phone, you get more business than you know what to deal with. (FYI, it does take effort). That does sound like a good thing. What ends up happening is that you are constantly juggling building the business, retaining the business you earned, and actually performing inspections. At some point you will have to tell someone that you cannot get to it this week or you double schedule. Both options destroy the business that you worked so hard to create.
The second realization was that nearly all inspectors don’t want to deal with the business aspect and only want to inspect. After considering the first two, and several other realizations, I designed a business model to enable the inspectors to inspect, pay them an industry leading commission to be independent, handling all the front and back end of the business myself to ensure the company money was spent wisely while at the same time maintaining efficiency. The transition was actually quite easy. It turns out you get professionals when you pay them a professional wage. On average our inspectors make $60 per hour.
Is there anything you wish you would have done differently when starting your home inspection business?
I wish I could say there was. I did make quite a few mistakes. I used to say I would throw anything against the wall to see if it would stick. Granted, everything was very calculated with risk versus reward. Most things did not stick. But that was a learning process and I wouldn’t be here where I am with doing the things I did. I would have to say that my only regret is that I did not see my vision for where I wanted our company until after our first year.
What advice would you have for someone who is just beginning to consider getting into the home inspection business?
#1. Don’t sell yourself short! The first lesson when doing something new is forgetting you cannot do it. You are your only road block.
#2. If you are not struggling, you are not growing.
#3. The secret of happiness is gratefulness. And maintaining a happy, positive outlook will increase your confidence and professionalism.
These are a few rules I live by that have helped me time and time again.
To hear more from our graduates, you can visit our ICA Student and Graduate Reviews page.
And if you’re ready to get started on your journey to becoming a home inspector, let us know! You can learn more on our website at www.icaschool.com, or you can contact us at 888-374-4096 or firstname.lastname@example.org.