I am one of the few individuals who introduced Home Inspections to Toronto in 1976, and who provided the service without governmental interference for more than thirty years.
Until 1976 real estate agents warmed up buns in the oven to create a homey smell, selected soft background music from the radio, and wasted no more than 30-minutes ushering prospective purchasers through the property to clinch a deal. No one cared about the interest of the purchaser, because all properties were merely sold under the motto “Caveat Emptor.”
To protect their turf, Realtors and their agents tried for years to suppress consumer requests for pre-purchase home inspections. Only the increase of lawsuits filed by deceived home buyers against Realtors or their agents brought finally a change in attitude at the beginning of the Eighties. But it soon became apparent that the change of mind was not meant to benefit the home buying public, but simply “to let somebody else take the heat.” Nothing has changed since then.
Trying to regulate a few hundred home inspectors to protect consumers against the conniving and entrenched sales techniques of the mighty real estate fraternity is not worth the effort unless the tens of thousands of real estate agents in Ontario are also prohibited from referring the services of any - and in particular - their preferred home inspectors.
Even though licensing of home inspectors might have its merits in general, it is my understanding that a similar exercise in British Columbia and Alberta has not brought the intended consumer protection. One can only hope that the Ontario Government will obtain advice from its governmental counterparts before the proposed legislation is being finalized and implemented.
Rudolf Reusse - Home Inspector since 1976 - Retired