How to Find Property Inspectors

By Eric Tyson, Ray Brown

Locating house inspectors is usually quite easy. One good source of property inspectors is either online or printed phone directories under “Building Inspection Services” or “Home Inspection Services.” You can also ask friends and business associates who’ve either bought or sold a house recently for the names of their property inspectors. If you’re working with an agent, ask the agent to recommend several highly regarded inspectors. Using a well-known inspector with an excellent reputation increases your report’s credibility.

The American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI) is a professional association of independent property inspectors. ASHI membership doesn’t guarantee that the inspector is competent, but hiring a member of this organization increases the likelihood that you’ll be working with a qualified professional. You can’t buy your way into the ASHI by paying a fee. All ASHI-certified members must have performed at least 250 property inspections and must pass two written proficiency exams as a prerequisite of membership. ASHI members must also adhere to the ASHI standards of practice, continuing education requirements, and code of ethics. To find members in your area, call ASHI at (800) 743-ASHI (2744).

In the interest of full disclosure, allow prospective buyers to review your inspection report prior to making an offer if they want. However, encourage buyers to get their own inspections. Even the best inspector occasionally misses defects. If the buyers rely solely on your report and find repair problems after the sale is complete, you don’t want them claiming that you intentionally gave them a faulty inspection report to mislead them about your house’s condition.