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Selecting An Inspector

Protect yourself

When interviewing Home Inspectors, ask these questions to protect yourself:

  • Are you an ASHI Certified Member?
    All Home Inspectors in Wisconsin have to be certified by the State. A new Home Inspector may have just passsed the State exam, yet have no practical experience. Be sure the inspector you select is a Member of ASHI (American Society of Home Inspectors) If he/ she is just a candidate or not a member at all, they may not have the experience that will help protect you.

  • Are you a "Full Time" Home Inspector?
    A full time Home Inspector will generally have more experience than someone that works part time.

  • Do you have Liability and Errors & Omissions Insurance?
    Liability Insurance alone will not protect you if your Home Inspector misses a major defect. Errors and Omissions insurance is not cheap. A professional will have it to protect you as well as him/ her.

  • How long does the inspection typically last?
    A Home Inspection typically lasts about 2-3 hours depending on the size of the house, whether or not it is occupied, the experience of the Home Inspector. There are some inspectors that guarantee they will be done in an hour or less. You get what you pay for.

  • How many Home Inspections have you done?
    After answering that question, ask the next and then do the math to check honesty. 3/day x 5 days/ wk x 50 wks = 750/ year. (That's a busy inspector)

  • How long have you been a full time Home Inspector?
    Multiply their reply by 750. If your number is less than theirs, question the validity.

  • Do you get on top of the roof?
    The State Standards of Practice do not require a Home Inspector to climb on the roof. The truth is, if the roof is covered with snow, ice or is just too steep, it is not a good idea to climb on top of it. A Home Inspector that makes a practice of inspecting roofs from the ground is likely to miss some critical issues.

  • Do you take photos of the defects?
    It's a good idea to have a visual record of the defects in case there is a disagreement as to what exactly the condition is. A picture is worth a thousand words.

  • How much do you charge?
    Ah! The part you've been waiting for. Don't go for the lowest price. The lowest price is often the lowest quality. Remember you get what you pay for. Saving $50.00 on the inspection may cost you thousands when it is time to sell the house.