ASHI commits suicide, one state at a time.

ASHI continues to push licensing which helps NACHI and harms inspectors.

  • Minimum standard licensing that uses the Kindergarten NHIE continues to dilute the market share of established inspectors by making everyone (including newbies) all “equally licensed.”
  • Licensing doubles to triples the number of inspectors in any state where it is adopted, while only holding out 3 or 4 bozos who can’t pass a memory exam.
  • Licensing causes home inspection schools to pop up on every corner, all pumping out a steady stream of new inspectors (competitors), each waving their newly printed licenses.
  • Licensing causes us all to become comoditized and flattens (and even lowers) our overall fee structures and makes it nearly impossible to raise prices.
  • Licensing causes real estate agents to stop recommending the best inspectors based on merit (as is their duty) and instead, in an attempt to avoid negligent referral suits, point to the never ending list of licensed inspectors who can only compete on price.
    NACHI was originally created to be a post-licensing trade association, one that offers all the that the state (the ultimate credential issuing organization) will never offer. This is why NACHI does so well for licensed inspectors… we’re built for it! NACHI’s checkbook loves licensing… but I (and anyone else who cares about the profession)… should hate it.

ASHI’s push for licensing is much like playing chess with someone for the first time. They make, what appears on the surface, to be really odd moves, ones you don’t understand. Why would ASHI replace the only perceived benefit they offer their members (a credential) with one offered to everyone by the state (a license)? So you think “Uh oh, maybe these are really thought out, brilliant plays”… then as the game goes on (and you see the results of licensing in other states) you realize… your opponent isn’t thinking at all. He’s an idiot.

As the other associations struggle to survive (all of them reporting massive losses in membership), licensing is helping NACHI (a post-licensing crafted, member-benefit association) become the lone trade association of an industry full of starving inspectors. This is not a game I wish to win.

Nick, I have come to the same conclusion and agree with you. After many months of battling here in NH I have decided the best thing for us is to fight licensing. I have decided to concentrate my efforts against any bill and I believe our state legislators are sick of the NACHI/Ashi turf war going on.


I agree with you 100% about the licensing issue. Practically everyone in Illinois is now a home inspector. What I fail to understand though is why an online trade association exam is considered a higher standard than a proctored NHIE exam? I think this a fair question. Your answer may even help NACHI members overcome the ‘are you ASHI’ obstacle which is still commom in many areas.


To me the difference is we have standards for start up membership. ASHI has none. We both have different standards for full membership. ASHI’s standards in this area are not hard to meet just different than ours.

The problem that ASHI has is that the “proctored” exam is NOT required on day one.

Thus their membership is driven to do many inspections with no qualifications at all to get to the 250 number (I think I am correct - if not someone will tell me) thus possibly doing damage to the profession.

In some respects their own rules hurt their “full” members

I would guess that they would go under if they required all members to be “full” on day one to join the org.

Not to bash ASHI but as the father of the industry so to speak one would think that service to the profession and their members would be better that trying to get as much $$ out of their members as possible would be their number one goal

Trade orgs are to help members not hurt them – I think that ASHI at this point in time is hurting their members

I hope that Nick and NACHI do not get involved in any major “rape the member” issues. We are darn good - Lets keep it that way

See other posts about the franchise deal

Just my thoughts


Thanks for your insight Richard. Your point of an online exam being better than no exam is good point.

At the Toronto Convention I approached by a licensed inspector who passed the state exam (read NHIE) but could not pass NACHI’s exam for membership.

Today I received a call from a non-NACHI Association member who also could not pass our exam, although he had no problem with the “proctored” NHIE. He couldn’t understand why his score of 78 was not a passing grade.

I always love reading these exam debates…

I found the NHIE to be harder than the nachi exam. But neither was that tough, and no one should comment unless that have taken both.

Actually it it difficult for anyone to evaluate unless they first understand the built-in intelligence behind NACHI’s exam which intentionally asks what the ignorant call “easy questions” (ones every inspector should know the answer to) then offers no credit to the exam taker for answering them correctly, but severely punishes the exam taker (in terms of score) for answering them incorrectly, thus helping to keep out those inspectors who horribly lack in any one area and protecting consumers in the process.


Other than the built-in-intelligence which is good at uncovering people who have no business in the inspection business, the other main differences that are quantifiable are that NACHI’s passing cut-off score is much tougher (you need an 80 or better to pass) and our failure rate is much higher (almost 60% failure rate): despite ours being open book (which should make it easier).

Anyway, our superior exam isn’t the issue… the issue is that licensing ASHI-style is becoming the death of ASHI members… hence the title of this thread.


I have no idea where you are headed with that comment or why?

I for one do not understand why everyone takes the credence of an entry level exam so seriously or are even concerned with it. If you practice in licensed states, it doesn’t matter what association exam is tougher, proctored, etc. The old adage or fight that this association is better than that association no longer holds water because of a mere entry level test now administered by 30 or more states to all inspectors regardless of association. Everyone is on an even keel when it comes to licensing exams.

Now I suppose we could also replace the words testing in the above to all other qualifications. (Number of inspections, etc.).

Associations are no longer relied upon to ensure basic qualifications. State Laws pushed and implemented by ASHI and others has replaced the reason that most associations were formed. Associations are no longer the qualifier and must look to the “wants and needs” of the inspector and their business tools and resources rathar than concentrating on the basics.

John Bowman is right on. Credential issuing has been taken over by a very formidable organization… the government.

And one other point… NACHI doesn’t use the results of merely one exam as the basis of membership: anyway.

If you are a home inspection association in a licensed state and don’t have at least 3 membership benefits per dollar/year charged in dues (about 1,000 )… you are dead.


Keep talking like this and I am going to start losing some of the awe and esteem that I have always held for those who speak house.

I am headed no further than the comment itself. Nachi keeps saying that the nhie is kindergarten, but it was more difficult than nachi’s. Thats all.

Re-read first paragraph of post #8 and then:

Also, any exam that has a passing cut-off score so low that an exam taker can answer 1 out of 3 questions incorrectly and still pass… is a joke exam (Kindergarten NHIE).

So what’s the big deal with having a low passing cut-off score like the NHIE?

A multiple choice question is not much harder (statistically) than a True and False question because unlike a True and False question, a multiple choice question gives clues in the answers. Also, the typical mutiple choice question has several implausible answers that the exam taker (even if he/she knows little about the subject) can eliminate as probably incorrect. This means that the exam taker has a 1 in 2 chance of answering each question correctly if (after eliminate the obviously incorrect choices) while wearing a blindfold for the exam taker is only choosing between the correct answer and a plausible incorrect answer (just like a True/False question statistically).

That means that after eliminating the obviously incorrect choices, a blindfolded monkey can get 50% right on even a “tough exam”… an exam about Nuclear Physics for instance.

Now lets suppose that the exam taker knows little about the subject but makes educated guesses. This gives him an advantage over the blindfolded monkey and the educated guesser can get about 60% right.

So if the passing cut off score is 70% and an educated guesser who knows little about the subject can score 60%… how much does one really need to know about a subject to pass? Answer: Not much if the passing cut-off score is low.

The way around this problem (other than raising the passing cut-off score) is to negatively weigh certain answers (severely punish the exam taker in terms of score) and minus points for incorrectly answering easy questions (questions everyone in the profession should be able to answer correctly) while not rewarding the exam taker for answering such questions correctly… for you see the blinfolded monkey only gets 50% right (in terms of score) when the correct answers and plausible (to the educated guesser) incorrect answers are evenly weighted without NACHI’s negative weighing of incorrect answers. Some exams don’t even have the ability to weigh questions let alone weigh answers let alone negatively weigh answers.

Anyway… NACHI’s exams have this built-in intelligence to keep blindfolded monkeys from guessing their way to a passing score… other Kindergarten exams do not.

I know… I’m off topic.

The last time I took the NACHI exam I do not think I answered the non SOP related questions correctly. I found them hard to study for.

If a group considers licensing a “High stakes poker game”, and wants to get their test accepted by MANY states one thing they have to constantly monitor is the pass/fail ratio. If too many people fail, the test takers complain to the state OR their legislator, AND maybe when the next contract for the TEST is up for renewal somebody else might get it.

Therefore one would guess that maybe once in a while something has to give for a group to stay under contract. Wonder what that would be.

Dan, if you take a test in a state to get a license OF COURSE THEY MONITOR THE PASS/FAIL RATE. :stuck_out_tongue: DUH


Brian -

So then you and a few others understand exactly what I just said without me saying it, about the tests and the test givers.

Ahhh, good point.