National Occupational Standards

On Tuesday I will be in Ottawa attending a meeting to review national occupational standards for home inspectors in Canada.

I quote from the guidelines:

During the sessions, you will be asked to articulate the competencies required for workers in the occupation. Your ability to explain what it is that you do, how you do it, and what the future trends in the industry appear to be will be critical to success.

With that in mind, does anyone have any constructive suggestions to make that I might be able to bring to the discussion?

I believe that these sessions are being held with the intent of gathering information, so the more information I can give, the better.

Who are you representing in the discussions?

Congratulations Paul - wish I could attend.

There is no tricks or politics - in the national occupational standards (NOS) - it’s what skills do we all share in common. The original NOS was written over 5 years ago, and must be periodically reviewed to assure current relevance.

Respectfully this is not about representation, it’s about what skills are required to be a “reasonably” competent home inspector.

I suggest that perhaps some may want to offer their experience of the skills that have changed over the past 5 years or so. I can offer a few, such as the use of digital images, both for report, but also to CYA. Or how about, the concerns with environmental issues - are they now being pushed into the normal expectations of what the home inspector should report?

Paul and the other people do not officially ‘Represent’ anyone, but you could say he is NACHI’s voice at the table. They were all selected from National Certificate Holders being a bit mindful of regions because some tasks are done in one province and not the next.

Paul was the only NACHI (only) member to apply so I believe that is why he was selected, although he easily measures up in the experience and educational requirements. He can provide a NACHI perspective and other than the red foam nose he’ll have to wear nobody will be able to tell he’s a member of NACHI. :slight_smile:

I’m glad he asked for ideas because the more input the better. This review is more about our ‘job description’ than a Standard of Practice.

When the Focus Group is done, the results will be distributed to as many inspectors as posibble with a survey and other ways to comment and make suggestions.

Only after all input is tabulated will the final draft be prepared, and the goal is to have this by the end of summer 2008.

See you on Monday, Paul
Bill Mullen

As far as I’m concerned I’m representing myself.

In as much as I am a NACHI member I thought it would be advantageous to ask for input, in case there was anything that NACHIs considered important that might be different from other home inspectors.

For one thing, I would like to find ways to incorporate more online educational opportunities into the list of verified credits. For instance, if a person has to have so many continuing education credits for national certification, it can be very expensive if you live in a rural area (as I do) and have to travel to meetings and so on. I’m looking for ways to make this type of continuing education acceptable.

There is a precedent with the carson dunlop course, so that would be a good place to start.

Any other ideas?

I just took NACHI the IR course with John Mc and Will D 16 hours two days all done via the phone worked extremely well we had Home inspectors from Florida, Colorado, Canada and many other states.


The requirement for proctored exams eliminates alot of online or distance education. Possibly accepting the education hours with a standard Inspection Exam issued by the NCP that incorporates the standards that they feel critical could help with that.

Just for clarification:

The NOS Review will not be dealing with courses or educational credits. It has nothing to do with accepting or reviewing what is offered in various courses.

The National Occupational Standards basically define what we do in our jobs. It does not address how we learn to do it or how we are examined to the standard.

For instance, as Claude suggested, we are looking for any changes that would affect our tasks, such as AFCI Devices. Five or six years ago nobody used them so we didn’t have to worry about them. Now they are commonplace, so we have to decide if they will become part of our tasks and if so, how do we inspect them?

All that being said, some of the suggestions I have seen including those above merit consideration. All areas of the NCP come up for ongoing review, so new ideas or old ones recycled all help the program.

Bill Mullen RHI
NOS Review Chair

Good point Bill, however, if it is agreed that home inspectors need to know about new building materials or standards, how are they to acquire these upgrades?

And though we will not be discussing educational credits, it does say in the Occupational Standards published May 1, 2001:

Secondary Objectives:

  1. Enhance education and training mechanisms across Canada …

The national occupational standards Professional Home/Property Inspectors will be used to consider the following activities:

Develop training programs to meet the needs of the Professional Home/Property Inspectors that are specific to each sector …

Establish an accreditation program for institutions delivering educational programs.

So the educational aspect is certainly one to consider, though I agree this is not on the agenda for our meeting.

Well said. I know you will enjoy the experience and I’m sure we’ll all come away satisfied. Get ready for some really intense sessions.

Bill Mullen

How about posting the current Standards on this board? Then we can all see and respond.

By all means. If you can’t open them here they are also on the site.

Bill Mullen