Carefull on Education..

I have first-hand experience to know that the State of New York WILL NOT ALLOW ANY Internet or Distance Learning Home Inspection training to qualify for the requirement on education for licensing. I spent, in May 2005, $2500.00 on Distance Learning of over 200 hours and was told by the state that I MUST have classroom training. So, I will be having to spend half that amonut, again, to get the classroom training which, is the same curriculum as the distance learning, but instead in a classroom where you have to take a week and a half off to go and stay(hotels) just for the record. I was told by the school, which has been approved by the State of NY, of which I took the distance learning course and passed examinations, that the state has approved their training for modules 1-3 without any changes. So, for $1000 some dollars, I can travel to the school and go through the same material, but in a classroom, just for the state of New York. Of course, I won’t be able to take this classroom training until March because of the new module 4 requirement. Anyway, the aforementioned is only to give you a synopsis of what will happen if you take the “wrong” education. I see in the NACHI mall an advertisement by “A Better Schooling Of Building Inspection”, under Education that states that their training will suffice for ALL states of the union. They mention that they are a distance learning training school. BEWARE:eek:. This is NOT TRUE for NYS licensing!! Also, I see that ABITCOINC.COM is STILL advertising that they are the only school licensed in NYS to train Home Inspectors for licensing. They even have chaged their course to 140 hours, but they ARE NOT, at the moment, on the list of approved training schools. (look at the approved training school link on the DOS page under home inspection). I know that these schools are being added very slowly, but DO NOT enroll in a school such as ABITCO, untill they show up on the list. Unless you want to throw out your money ($3000 plus with ABITCO):shock::shock:


That’s too bad. Sorry to hear of your trying experience with the new licensing laws taking effect in NY.

Also be aware that NACHI CE credits may not be approved by the New York state HI board as well.

I’ve been trying to get NACHI CE credits approved through the Massachusetts HI board for almost a year now, with no positive results.

Virginia will not allow any Internet or Distance Learning Home Inspection training to qualify for the requirement on education as well.

You’ve learned something I’ve been telling new guys for years. So many of them think they don’t have time to take off from their: (1) job; (2) family; or (3) everything else to learn to be a home inspector - so they skip the training or try the home study route instead. We’ve had people come to us, and afterwards tell us our onsite course was not accepted somewhere.

New guys … check real carefully what the requirements are in your state before you sign up for a class somewhere. **AND **if you don’t have time to devote to 1-2 weeks of your time to full time schooling for a great new profession and career - maybe this is not the line of work for you.

If anyone has been a victim of attending 100 + hours of schooling in a school not approved by NYS, call me and I will work with you to achieve your education at a NACHI discounted rate.

Your profession shouls not suffer due to these obsticles. They actually make us stronger in the long run.

Call me. we have openings in March and our fees are reasonable. We have kept the pricing this low as a favor to NACHI staff to benefit NACHI members.

Happy New Year- Keep the faith!

You’re a good man Bill !!!

Thank you Mickey!

Mr. Bowers, you seem to have a chip on your shoulder! First off, it is not black and white as you may believe. In my case, as well as others, it is NOT just a matter of taking time off from the job to fall into a great career. You do know that it takes 2 to 4 years to build this business to an income to survive on. C’mon, we have all heard it and it is true, unless you are single; have no kids and live in a 10 X 10 apartment and walk everywhere you go! I came from a fulltime job making a good income to where I am now, earning nothing, trying to build the home inspection business but can’t because the state of NY says nay to my education. I did NOT leave my fulltime job abruptly to start this business, I WAS LAID OFF!! And, if you do not approve of online/distance learning, them why do you offer it at all? Is It the mighty dollar that shades your motives? Lastly, New York State did NOT KNOW what they required for education until Late November…I know because I was at the Rochester NACHI chapter meeting listening to the Assembly woman. Mr. Bowers, I would hope that you would think about how you portrayed your views before just throwing them down…the home inspection business, does believe it or not, require compassion to others.

Hi to all,

Robert, I know Dan well enough to know that his post was not meant to attack you or any other inspector, the plain fact of the matter is that very few state regulatory authorities will accept online education for licensed trades.

I know that Dan’s post was intended to be cautionary not combative.

This whole area frustrates everybody, including us educators, everytime a state introduces licensing we have a new set of rules to live by, it’s a pain in the A$$, many states have enacted legislation that has totally discounted any previous education not supported by the licensing board, that is a major problem for all.

Please don’t shoot the messengers :wink:



Not everyone takes a course for the purpose of fufilling state requirements. First of all, most states have no continuing education requirements. Many other states have very minimal continuing education requirements (under 20 hours/year). Furthermore, most states limit their approval to very basic, technical subjects and don’t approve any ancillary inspection ( our mold certification course are always packed) or business courses (our success courses at are packed).

Last week I ordered and received 3 DVDs from Professional Equipment on use of electrical, moisture and combustible gas meters. I watched the latter last night… and I’m not even an inspector.

Gerry’s online roofing course has been taken constantly since we launched it.

Finally, many inspectors far exceed their NACHI and state requirements year after year. Shocking as it may sound, some actually take courses to learn.

Hi everyone,

The sad fact about this online learning and distance learning. Who can tell exactly who is taking the course or test. Prime example and this was shared with Robert on the phone. In NYS State, Volunteer Firefighters could go to a class, sit and listen (or may not listen) for two hours. Get college credits. There were people who 1. did not have a HS Diploma, 2. Could not even read or write. They were getting College Credits.
NYS stopped that and said, everyone who takes these courses have to take a test and pass it with a 70% to get credit for the class. If not then they got a certificate of attendance. So now there is a test for every class that has to be passed in front of the instructor. Attendance is taken too.
My point is, it is happening every place. Look at these Distance learning colleges. I am sure there is some kind of accountability there. I know one school 45% of the class time has to be done on campus.
I have talked to Robert about this indepth but it is all unfortunate there are some schools making big money from people like him and probably not thinking anything of it.
It is true what Robert said NYS did not have thier act together until November. One month before the licensing. Really they should of been lean on some of the requirements for education too.


My wife recently got another Masters Degree and a Directorship Certificate for overseeing children in school systems throughout the State of Colorado… all from her kitchen. She never stepped onto a campus, never took a proctored exam.

University of Phoenix issues tens of thousands of Doctorate degrees every year to people who never leave their homes.

The reasoning behind it is you can’t proctor anything anyway. You can’t proctor that someone is paying attention in class or abiding by an SOP during an inspection or acting ethically in business.

Robert -

My post was not intended to attack you personally. And, for your information I don’t offer distance education on-line. For the last few years many people have taken CE classes on-line without ever setting foot in a classroom or on site for many subjects. I try to imagine my comfort level using a Doctor that got his/her degree on-line without any real on-site training or hands-on experience or residency with a competent mentor. When I think of that I cringe, the same way I do with HI’s getting into our profession by taking their training on-line UNLESS they have hands-on supervision for a specified number of inspections with a competent and experienced inspector.

Dan, I also have 40 plus hours with hands-on inspection experience with a very experienced and grandfathered Home Inspector that I obtained throughout this past summer. I have also completed 6 paid inspections by myself thru my business this summer. So, I have more than the Online/distance training. Just so you know.

Dan, that is quite different than a classroom and I agree with you. Hands-on, on-site is best.

The question is what is second best, online or classroom?

There is NO WAY ON GOD’s LITTLE GREEN EARTH that you can learn as much in a classroom as you can online. Online courses have far too many advantages including a few off the top of my head:

  1. You can go at your own pace online.
  2. You can see more examples online (do you really think any school could bring in all the roofs that are in Gerry’s online roofing course?).
  3. You can back track online.
  4. You can repeat over and over online.
  5. You can learn when you are most ready and wanting (not Tuesday’s and Thursdays from 7pm to 9pm).
  6. Some online courses have built-in intelligence which discovers and continually works one’s weak spots.
  7. Online courses are financially more affordable permitting you to take more education.
  8. Online courses are typically much more interactive and getting more interactive every day.
  9. Online anything can have endless links (we even link terms to their definitions), something a book doesn’t have and can’t do.
  10. The online student to teacher ratio can’t be beat. (:

I can think of many others too but you get the point… a classroom can’t hold the door for an online course IMHO and most major Universities agree.

Nick has posted some of the positive points about online education

Here are some additional thoughts

If we are going to be the best HI org then we must have the best HI’s as members and that means EDUCATION.

On site field training with an instructor is NOT where it is at. The instructor can be someone who can’t make it as an inspector so he becomes a teacher.
And the 40 hr required for hands on looks like one work week and that should be at least TWO inspections a day thus 10 homes.

K-12 charter schools are online and accepted in many areas. They even get tax $$ equal to what is spent on a per student in a school. – The charter school pays for the computer and the internet connection!! (and they are making $$)

Doctors are receiving more and more of their eduction on line. They are even doing some medical procedures online. I saw a mobile video conferencing setup on TV making the rounds at a hospital. The online Doctor is coming

If states like NY do not wake up to what the rest of the world is doing in the area quality online education they will get a licensed and regulated team of HIs that are not qualified to inspect an out house. - EDUCATION is the weak link.

I would be willing to bet that right now HI instructors are not LICENSED HI’s

One final thought – If anyone is into computer gaming just think how an online home inspection could be developed using the gaming concept

I bet that the day will come when a Jr inspector will be in the field with a wireless link to the office where a Master Inspector will be supervising him and maybe a hand full of other inspectors at the same time.

Inspecting certain homes are better done with a robot. Look what the military is doing. The drive by inspection will come and it will be better than any master inspector would ever expect to do.

I am sure that some additional information about the NY system is in order. I have not been following it and I am sure that all the schools are good and are providing quality education. It goes without saying that the STATE will be regulating the schools to the point that they will be producing the best HI’s that money can buy.

I would like some day to put some of the classroom educated HI’s up against some of the online educated HI’s in a testing environment.


"I would like some day to put some of the classroom educated HI’s up against some of the online educated HI’s in a testing environment. "




I am a professor of Architecture and Building Design and have been facilitating online home inspection courses (Intro to Home Inspections, Structures and a Building Science course) that are widely recognized for the past 3 years. These are offered through a community college in Toronto Ontario. I live in Windsor Ontario (across from Detroit Mich) approximately 4 hours drive from that location. These have been taken by participants across Canada, some U.S. states, and even those in other foreign countries.

There are several caveats to assuring that online courses are accepted. The key point includes a valid means of verifying the participants assessment - in our case through proctored exams. Another helpful means to assure help and assistance to the participants is through the use of chats and online discussions, to help prepare participants to succeed. These are all part of the course design to assure rigidity, integrity and built into the course design. The program has received such wide recognition and acceptance that we now offer a graduate level studies - that is recognized by the Ministry of Colleges and Universities (provincial education authority). So my point being - online education should not be easily discounted if there is a means of verification and rigidity built into the course.

Many of our inspectors have gone on to be very successful home inspectors. One thing to remember that online course are not meant for those with very low self-motivation. It takes lot of self-discipline and self-motivation to succeed.

Claude and anyone else,

This is the point of what I said earlier. The situation is accountability of the course. Just like the state of NY did with the Fire Science Courses, instead of just giving the credits. We had to show the knowlegde we had learned. This is one of things that personally help me. Learning everything I could about buildings, Structure, stability and Fire Safety.
Not to blow my own horn but other inspectors who have been around me here in some courses. I can size up a building from the outside, tell you basically where rooms are just by looking at the house. The Basic Structure, I learned that in a class. So countability is the key purpose! If the school has it then it should go for the gold.
I also understand about the online Univerties but as nick said. Would you want your Doctor making decissions about your life through just an online course? Well good for up if you do. Personally not me. So why should I expect my clients too.


I agree but we are not “doctors” - that is certainly one thing, but home inspection takes technical knowledge, defect recognition training, communication and reporting skills, and onsite practical inspection experience. All but the last one can be learned online. We find that mentoring our students refines and puts significant value to the first four requisites into developing good home inspectors. Life and safety issues are the closest we need think home inspectors come at nearing the skills required of doctors.l