Based on the information you provided it seems you like and respect your employer. I would recommend for you to set up a meeting with him and discuss your future with the company. Explain to him you think you bring value to the organization and would like to be compensated for it. As an owner, believe me it is difficult to find and keep valuable employees.
If you ain’t greedy and want to be in control of your time & life there are very few professions which can deliver the bacon like being your own boss as a home inspector. The trick of course is being proficient in construction methods and technology while possessing strong communication skills, it looks a lot easier than it is in reality. Of course there will always be those those corporate types (spit) who can screw up a free lunch by introducing scientific management methods to extract profits from the labor of others who they can underpay while training their competition. Go figure.
Going on your own is much more difficult than most people think.
On average, most people who try go out of business
See: What is the Survival Rate For Home Inspectors?
My crew under me do’t worry about going out of business. They don’t worry about marketing, they don’t worry how to make the phone ring, they know they’re going to get jobs to go to.
Meanwhile I pay for the NACHI memberships, I buy their tools, their ladders, I pay for all their insurance, (E&O and GL AND workman’s comp), milage, software, phones, etc. I even recently started offering health care benefits. Oh, and I even pay them while they’re in training.
Meanwhile, if they miss something, I’m the one getting sued, not them.
There is a value in being an employee inspector. They have no risk, no start up costs, no expenses, and I still pay way more than they would working most jobs once they’re trained.
I know we’re in a different market, but have done a fair amount of research on average pay, here is a range I’ve discovered.
Hourly: $25-$30 per hour
Percentage: 27.5% - 50% of inspection (and/or ancillary inspection) fees
Benefits may include: Mileage reimbursement OR monthly gasoline pay, full out work vehicle
Cell phone OR cell phone reimbursement
Medical, dental, vision, life insurance, 401k
Training and organization membership fees, license renewal costs
Paid time off, sick leave, other types of leave
OTHER (fringe) benefits: Gym membership, audiobook membership, charity matching
Intangible benefits: Scheduling flexibility, Autonomy,
Advancement opportunities, Healthy work culture and Work life balance
Compensation for the amount of work you are doing seems low. Having said that, my understanding is that you have been working for your employer for 5 months.
You like your boss and get along well with him. He provides all the necessaries for you to do your job (even helped to get your wheels back on the road). I sense you are happy working for him as opposed to the thought of striking off on your own (which can be overwhelming and stressful). It seems you are more comfortable with security (employee) than risk (self-employed) and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. It is your choice and what you are comfortable with as you move forward. You are working very hard for your money and bills need to be paid. If your boss is happy with you and if he values you as an asset to his business he will compensate you accordingly. Be patient. His timeline and yours need some tweaking that is all. Communicate honestly with your boss and let him know you are looking forward to discussing your future with his company. Ask for a day and time when you can do that. I know it’s easier said than done, but be patient and, keep learning. Good luck and it would be great if you could give us an update on how things are turning out for you.
Thank you Geoffrey and thank you all for your response. Hearing from all of you gives me the sense that although we may not be in the same area, we look out for each other in this industry. I have scheduled a time to chat with my boss and hope all goes well. I realize my value to the company a little better now and what the pay in the industry is like too.
Good luck. I would suggest you indicate that you are no longer in training and should receive more money. Usually, I’ve seen where inspectors get about 50% of the value of each inspection once they are able to be on their own with minimal oversight. After you get about a year’s worth of experience and have had no real issues, then you should expect another raise, but at the same time making sure you are offering more to the company than just doing basic inspections. In order to do that, get additional training and be able to do more ancillary inspections…that’s where the extra income is to the company. Sounds like you are doing that already. Good luck.