More about BC Licensing

Quote from the link below: Thorne said almost anyone can call themselves a home inspector in B.C. All they have to do, she said, is take a course online for about $200. "You can even have fewer qualifications than that and get jobs,’’ she said.

New rules requiring home inspectors to be licensed are expected to be in place this fall.

The self proclaimed industry leaders must all be salivating and rubbing their hands together thinking of all the courses $$$$$ they will teach and recertification’s $$$$$ they will perform, possibly on an annual basis no less. All for very reasonable fees I’m sure.

Learn from those who have travelled this road before you have. Study the perplexities…and the pitfalls…that have befallen home inspectors in the United States who, like you, thought that licensing would be the answer to ther issues.

Take the $200 school and make it a $2000 school. Require that the inspector pass a written test of your choice. Set two or three other criteria out there…and watch.

Watch the opportunists starting the schools that will crank out hundreds of graduates every few weeks into this “new” licensed field.

Watch how the Canadian consumer determines, as everyone does in states that have licensing, that inspectors with a license are equally qualified and competent.

Watch how the large number of licensed home inspectors, who are all equally qualified and competent, are forced to compete against each other by the only other variable they can control…the amount of their fee.

Watch, as the average home inspection drops below $150.

Licensing solves nothing.

Actually you and NACHI are a prime example why licencing is required as is every other association in Canada.

While CAHPI may not be perfect its far better than the rag tag entry requirements of NACHI.

That is happening now in Canada.

The have no assurance now, so I fail to see the difference.

Nonsense, if that were the case licenced electricians would be undercutting their prices, which is just not the case. Last time I checked all the electricians my area are charging $75 per hour. The fees ae increasing not declining.

Nonsense that will never happen, just as plumbers, electricians, and other licenced professions fees remain high.

Me thinks you fear licencing because it will neutralize associations that function on the fringe with no outside accountability.

The political climate and consumer interest is telling another story in Canada which you are not fully cognizant of.

Licencing the great equalizer.

James, You hit the nail right on the head. I was in favor of it at one time but now I see that it is just going to be more of the same BS that has been going on up here for years. The government will likely contract out the licensing program to the self proclaimed industry leaders .

Roy said:

Like Nachi? So far this does not seem to be the case in BC or Alberta.

Hello Ray,
No, not Nachi. Most likely follow the Canadian NC program. After all, the government has already put considerable amounts of money into that program. It would make sense to use it don’t you think? Besides, we all know how fair and equitable the program is, right?


Licencing has to be based on some minimum standard, such as established bylaws and policies of the exisiting associations. We know that Nachi does not have any bylaws or policies to draw on like the associations of record in Canada. No government in its right mind would or should draw on qualities that are non existant or on paper.


Set the bar high enough and it will rule out a rush into the field!!! In my province, I don’t see everyone rushing into the electrical, carpentry and plumbing fields as they have to really study, pass supervised papers and work in the field for 50 and upward weeks. As a matter of fact, last fall the carpenters union started offering FREE training to entice people to enter the field!!! Crazy!!! What do these people want next …free tools, free truck…free everything?? Make it cheap and easy and everyone will think they can be a home inspector!!! Isn’t that what happens here and with other diploma mills most of the time???

Why is there so high a failure rate (80-90%) for new inspectors??? Because the mills need new fodder for profit year after year. Promise suckers big $$$$$ and they join the slaughter!! They really don’t care if the trainees make it or not…there’s more suckers at the front door to “train”…let’s get’um through!!

Our local chapter of CAHPI (4 Atlantic provinces covered) has only grown by 12-15 or so additional members (3 in NS, most from outside my own province) in the last 2-3 years while I have found that there are are least 11-12+ new home inspectors in the province!!! (Where did they get trained??) It takes about 2-3+ years at least before anyone can hope to get the full training and other requirements under their belt (it took a 25+ year retired municipal inspector 2 years)…and it’s going to get more stringent: on the table now is a **1 year probationary period **for new members. Paying your $$$$ does not assure anything here!!!

There are others who have applied to get in but have to wait until they meet minimum criteria just to be considered a student/applicant inspector. Meet the criteria and they’ll gladly accept you. And when the topic comes up at meetings, I push for more rigorous training!!! IMHO, the SOP’s that we work with are 30+ years old and don’t really cut it with today’s houses and the public’s expectations.

If the training program cost is no less than $5000 and the license fee is no less than $2000 a year this might work.

If people have to pay high fees then they will take a second look if they can afford to enter the occupation.

In a perfect world everything would be simple and people would be rich. This is not a simple world.

There is allot more work that needs to be put into licensing before it will meet most peoples needs and do the consumer some good.

The other problem that I see (no offense) is that allot of my Canadian brothers do not want to look beyond the border to the south. Life is simpler of we learn from others mistakes.

Status Quo is looking very good.

Lawrence Olsen
Universal Inspections


And how do you plan on stopping the rot that currently exists up here in Canada where there is no outside oversight with the industry where pretty much anything goes? We have a real problem in Ontario, and self regulation has failed miserably.

Far better to have licencing in which industry members participate in a sound licencing requirment and where hopefully we are able to limit our liabilities.

While it may be a good idea to look state side the facts in Canada are different and most licencing polls states side support licencing. There was a recent poll on Inspector Journal with 2/3 of respondents in favour of it.


Will licensing guarantee consumer protection?

Will licensing guarantee better inspectors?

Will licensing be dumbed down to assure that ALL home inspectors are included?

Will licensing work if there adequate numbers to make it financially viable for the body that regulates licensing?

Will it be influenced by others outside of the home inspection sector?

It’s a numbers game. A “lobbyist” in Ontario told me that licensing will not happen until there are adequate numbers to make it attractive to the province.

Even “phooey” can be misinterpreted!

Let me play Devils advocate:

Will National Certification guarantee consumer protection?

Will NC guarantee better inspectors?

Will NC be dumbed down to assure that ALL home inspectors are included?

Will NC work if there adequate numbers to make it financially viable for the body that regulates NC?

Will NC be influenced by others outside of the home inspection sector?

It’s a numbers game. A “lobbyist” in Ontario told me that licensing will not happen until there are adequate numbers to make it attractive to the province. And NC has no bearing legally in Ontario or anyother province as trades are a provincial matter jurisdictional wise.

Even “phooey” can be misinterpreted!


I understand some of your frustrations.

I wish I could remember the stat, in Alberta there has only been 3 complaints in the last 3-6 years ???. Please don’t quote me on that but I know that the numbers are very low. This to me does not scream “WE NEED LICENSING”.

Claude brings some good questions to the table. Is licensing going to solve the problems that we have? Maybe in Ontario but I do not see the need in Alberta.


I am certainly interested to see what others think!

Brian MacNeish offered part of the problem. Set the bar “reasonably high enough”. Not only can anyone call themself a home inspector, even licensing will not stop it. At least not for some time.

Or perhaps we can dumb down the entry requirements to assure that ALL home inspectors are included. In many “states” licensing saw an increase in the number of inspectors and a general decrease in the fees, and more competition.

Are we worth less than what we all receive for the risk we take?

Do we need to lower our fees to stay competitive and sustain a “reasonably” comfortable income?

Is it really worth it?

By the time it happens - I will be retired and will honestly care less!

Ray you are right about the NC as well.

I will admit that I do not know the right answer but feel that status quo might be the answer right now until somebody gets a great idea or can improve the licensing that is in progress.


Hi Lawrence,

If you research court cases there are more complaints than just 3 a lot more. Nor are there records kept for cases which are reported only to the inspection association, or settled between complainant and inspector, or those where the inspector screwed up but the complainant didn’t take it further.

I am glad to hear that professional societies in Alberta do not have the same troubling problems as we in Ontario. Believe me its quite a mess down east here.


Claude the issue is not raising the bar, we really don’t have any bars now and look at the mess. To me licencing is required to address concerns that exists in home inspection associations which self regulate. If there is no outside oversite there is no guarantee that members let alone the public get a fair shake out of the deal. Currently the DPPC of OAHI has very limited powers to discipline or aid or assure the public that the proper course of action has been applied.

Brian you are talking about Licensed Trades .
Have you any experience how the Government handled it when the brought in Licensing with The Carpenters Plumbers Electricians.Auto Mechanics.
I have some experienced how they handled it in Ontario and would love to know your experience in how it was done

Thanks >Roy Cooke

Brian opined:

Sounds like the same growth level in Ontario with RHI. Slow to create new RHI due to over zealous bureaucratic red tape designed by a few zealots who run the BOE/AR. Keep the membership down so those on the lower Totem pole pay to run the association for the luxury of a few at the top. In OAHI the money filters to the top. :wink: