A home inspector is someone who inspects a home in a real estate transaction to provide feedback to the buyer about any potential problems. More than three out of four potential home buyers utilize the services of a home inspector. If you have an eye for detail and enjoy helping people, then home inspection may be the career for you. Some other personal qualifications include interest in construction, problem-solving ability, good organizational skills, clear communication skills and the desire to move about frequently throughout your day. Learn more about online courses to become a home inspector.
Where to Find Home Inspection Education
You can complete coursework for home inspection almost entirely online if that is what you desire. To begin your search for an online program, start by searching for a home inspection degree program in your state of residence. Since every state has different requirements to work as a home inspector, it is important that your education includes coursework that is applicable in your state. The online college doesn’t necessarily have to be in the same state, but you must be able to pass a licensing exam in your own state. Also, you should keep in mind that you will need to spend some of your learning time evaluating actual homes.
Educational Options and Requirements for Home Inspection
During the first part of your formal training to become a home inspector, your studies will focus on providing you with a broad overview of several different topics. Some of these topics may include:
• Learning various building codes.
• Understanding the foundational structure of private homes and commercial buildings.
• Instruction on electrical systems, plumbing, roofing, heating and cooling insulation.
• How to determine if a system within the home or commercial building is not up to code.
Once you have mastered these skills, it will be time for you to practice them by inspecting actual homes and businesses. You will also study business management and the principals of marketing. This information is helpful if you decide to open your own home inspection business.
Degree Programs for Home Inspectors
You may obtain a two-year degree through a community or technical college, or you may opt to complete your Bachelor’s through a traditional university. Regardless of the degree that you choose to obtain, you will be required to pass a home inspector licensing exam in your state before you can obtain your first position. Once you have received your degree and passed your exam, you will also be subject to ongoing continuing education requirements determined by the state where you live. Most home inspectors start out in an apprenticeship role by shadowing someone who has several years of experience in the field.
Job Outlook and Salary Information
In 2010, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) predicted an annual job growth rate in this field of 18 percent. The average yearly salary at that time was approximately $52,000, with entry-level home inspectors typically earning around $32,000 and those with the most experience commanding salaries of over $80,000 a year.