New member to the boards

Hi everyone,

Maybe an introduction will speed up the question here.

I am a Home Inspector in training, I am currently studying for the home inspection course through Carson Dunlop/Seneca. I have taken 5 exams so far, 1 I failed, I am resitting that course immediately this term. 1 course I got below the required for OAHI grade and the rest were fine. I am sitting another two on top of the one I failed this term so will be at 7 of ten by the end of this term hopefully (fingers crossed for all passes).
Anyway, I want to ask a few questions as to how I would approach getting employment within the Home Inspection field. Should I complete all the courses first before I approach a company? Would I be better to pass all the courses first? To OAHI standards? If there is more you think I should do before I try to gain employment what would that be?
I have no construction background, although I am also studying an Architectural program that seems to sap the life out of me ( I got stuck on Heavy construction blueprint reading)

All discussion on this is so welcome, I know I have a long time to go before I even finish the college courses, but I am thinking ahead. I have been reading the OAHI site seeing where I should go from the courses, and see a number of things that I need to do there too.

Thanks for any suggestions.


Well you have made a great start coming to the NACHI BB .
You will learn a huge amount here .
Listen ,read, ask questions and as you get more familiar you might consider joining NACHI .
You as a non member can only get to a part of this BB .
There are some sections available to members only .
What part of Ontario do you live in .
I live In Brighton 100 miles east of Toronto.
My wife is also a full time inspector .
We work as a team and it works well for us .
Look under this post these are just a few of the many things available at NACHI.
Just click and learn.

Hi Roy Thanks for the answers and the welcome.

I just took the test here, and rather surprised myself by getting 75% doing best in the areas I have already studied and still good in the course I failed.
That’s cheered me up.
RIght now I am in Richmond hill, but eventually we want to move out to some property we have that is east of the big smoke. My husband also wants to start taking the courses, he is loving watching me suffer first though I think.


I was an OAHI/CAHPI member and saw how little they do for the Home Inspection Industry. I joined NACHI in 2003 and have never been sorry.
A fantastic group of (Help every one) Home Inspectors.
More then a few are Lady home inspectors .
They are little more sedate then some of the men but do frequently post.



Welcome Kathy

I am sure that you will find NACHI very helpful. I am a new inspector and am shocked at the cost of getting started.
Some advice, if you decide to go on your own research the cost before you take the plunge you will be surprised at the cost of getting started. I don’t have a recent count but it is way over my budget and I still need to spend more money.
Advertising, E&O Insurance, Liability Insurance, Web sight, Business Cards, the list goes on. I don’t want to scare you but just give a little insight.

Good luck. If you need to know ask the pro’s at NACHI.

Lawrence Olsen
Universal Inspections

If you fail to plan you plan to fail.

Wow, lots of reading later (when I should have been studying, DOH!) I have already started forming a few opinions of this site, other associations mentioned, my choice in schooling, and where I should have gone!
Yowzers. I feel stupid now.
Never mind, so I may be lining the pockets of Carson Dunlop for the books, in the end I will have InterNACHI to help me cross the finish line.

This site is really cool by the way. The association has lots to offer, and now for the first time in the 8 months of studying I actually feel like there is a goal line. At least something to aim for, other than completing the ten exams then going about my merry way trying to figure my a*** end from my face in this field.

Seriously, I was wondering what the hell I was thinking of trying to become an inspector, last night when I signed up for these boards. I failed an exam that I was sure I had passed, looking at the OAHI requirements I need to sit another exam again to meet their standards, no hands on, nothing to offer a future employee… I felt like I was stranded. Frustrated beyond belief (it appears that it took two weeks for the fact that I had failed a course to hit me) I was looking through old bookmarks on the PC when I came across the bookmark for these forums.
I feel energized again after going through the vast amount of information here, the help from members, the great welcome I got, I know I could only have touched a drop in the ocean, but the info here is awesome, and so much back up help. The education available, the resources, it’s pretty awesome.
Maybe I should be saying this to Nick.

Awww, all the gushing over with now anyway, I am so glad I came here and introduced myself.

Lawrence, my husband is convinced I should go out on my own, but with no hands on experience, and no construction background I definitely feel that I need mentoring or guidance for a while before I would even consider going out on my own, not to mention all the other trials of self employment.
You bring up a lot of the points i have already considered. I completely agree with you. Maybe in the future I could do it.


Welcome Kathleen!

Check out the marketing posts and in particular the ones from Russel Ray. There are a lot of really good ideas, hints etc there and we all owe him a lot!

You mentioned real estate east of Toronto. If you are anywhere near Kingston give me a call and I would be happy to give you as many ‘drive alongs’ as you can stomach. :shock:


Welcome Kathleen you will learn more from this BB than from any where ells.


From reading your previous posts, I think that you need to be really sure that this is what you want to do. NACHI has a lot to offer and can help a good inspector become even better but it is important to recognize if you have an innate talent for inspecting or not.

If you do then you should succeed and with the help of the other members of NACHI, you should succeed even more.

If you don’t have an innate talent for home inspecting you may still survive for a while but you always likely find it to be a struggle.

It sounds like you are struggling with technical side of inspecting. Unfortuanlly this is where you must have a very broad and solid knowledge base. Marketing, business admin, etc are necessary things to have also to do well but it must all start with a good technical knowledge base.

I am not trying to dissuade you but rather, encourage you to take a self stock ad objectively determine if this is the best career choice for your you. Ask your self, “What are the real reasons I want to do this?”

I appreciate the comment Paul, don’t worry the thoughts crossed my mind too, but this is what I am dedicated to. My issue is with sitting exams and having no hands on experience, I learned earlier that I could have taken a course that offered hands on instead of all text no hands on. I really stink at sitting exams too. I get too worked up about them, I need to relax abit more about it.
I think my frustration is stemming from my lack of research into my options at the start of this adventure.
I am loving the courses, but am eternally frustrated by not being able to do hands on.
I am learning so much along the way, and the more I study the more fascinated I am. There is a lot of light bulb moments around here recently.
Sadly it was the electrical course I failed (Roy don’t shoot me) I was positive I passed, course work was fine and I had to have gone beyond missing a few questions in the exam to have failed. I must have really screwed it up. ( I think the woman directly behind me eating a bag of chips at the beginning really played foul ball, it got me so mad I couldn’t concentrate)
This actually doesn’t sit too badly with me though as it forces me to retake the course which can only serve to reinforce the information. I have already decided that if I fail it again then I shall be looking into taking some electrical courses.
I think my interest in residential construction started when I moved to Canada. I grew up in Britain, and so many things about building construction here differs that I was compelled to learn more about it.

I wish I could get out into the field already though and start seeing some of what I am reading about. It makes information so much easier to absorb.

George thanks for the offer, unfortunately I am not close enough to you for it work. What a great offer though. If I am ever in the area I will call on you though and take you up on the offer.


Kathleen this Industry has a failure rate of 90% in the first three years .
Many spend up to or more then $10,000;00 to get the training and experience to finally give up in disappointment.
If you would like to Bring your Partner and come down and talk to my Wife and I please call 613-475-1144 and you can ask question and get information.
WE am just finishing up mentoring two great people who want to become home inspectors.
If you would like to talk to them let me know and I will give you their Phone Numbers.
Taking the Carson Dunlop Course is great many have started with this course.
I am in the Carson Dunlop family and use their reporting system
. My web site listed at the bottom of this post.

For some hands on experience you may want to try working on a project Habitat for Humanity. You won’t get every thing you need but it may get you started.

I am surprised to read that there are still unwary newcomers around who believe that entering the home inspection business might be a ticket to success and/or financial independence. I suggest considering that the majority of home inspectors consist these days of retirees who already are collecting a secured pension from their former careers. The income from an “occasional” home inspection becomes therefore only a welcomed supplement of additional spending money.

Everyone involved in this business should have experienced by now that the only formula to make some real money is to render your integrity to the manipulative real estate fraternity - and to dance to their tune 24-7. But even this degrading approach is no guaranty for success. There must be a reason why most established home inspectors have become by now firstly educational course providers - franchisors - and/or publishers/vendors of *“real estate agent friendly” *report systems.

A visit to the Real Estate Forum - might also be beneficial to assess the chances how to become successful in this cutthroat business. **To find gainful employment in this field is close to nil. **

RUDOLF REUSSE - Home Inspector since 1976 - TORONTO

Kathy = welcome
my wife & I are an HI team in Ohio. We do well together. It’s a lot to learn, but can be a great field. You seem eager to learn. good for you.

Rudolf as per usual you tell it like it is.
It continues to break my Heart to see so many invest so much into this industry and many never make a dime.
The gentleman on the next street to me invested many months and much money never did an Inspection.
Thanks for your Post.
Hope many do read your post and understand you are one who has been around for a long time .
Early nineties I think.


Greetings all,
I have been following the posts with interest. Not knowing where to start, I registered with OAHI as a student before finding this site (actually by a post on the OAHI by a student). The info here is really great and I am enjoying going through the defect photos and NACHI TV. I intend to go through the info on this site then become a member.
I have only one course left to take for OAHI - that being electrical. My understanding was that the Carson Dunlop course was not acceptable for OAHI. I would prefer to take an in class course - but there are none that I know of in southern Ontario.
Can anyone recommend an electrical course that would fulfill the OAHI requirement?
Thanks all for the great posts and info.


Not to be smart but you should ask OAHI where you can get the electrical portion of their requirements. I am surprised Carson Dunlops is not acceptable.

Last time I heard non electricians were teaching the OAHI electrical course aka, other inspectors teaching students.

Good luck.


Thank you for your response. I did contact OAHI and they said to choose a course and they would let me know if it is acceptable. Just thought that other students may have done this investigation and be able to give some insight into where they took their electrical course.