Tools needed for Startup

What are the tools that a new inspector should have? Whats the cost of these tools? Is it better to buy new or is used ok? And where is the best source for tools for inspections?

Brandon, there are a ton of threads on this subject. Use search and you’ll find them.
All the best…

Ladder, circuit tester,flashlight, screwdriver for removing screws from deadfront panels, awl or something to poke at rotten wood. Thats super basic but I use those items every inspection. I also have a ton more stuff, but thats a start.

Spend the money on good tools now, don’t go cheap.

Agreed. But to answer your question “buy new or is used ok”… there are at times some good tools that are used. Depends on what it is, how old it is and how it was cared for.

Good starter list… but I would add camera for sure… a smart phone may do the trick there though.

Also, I find an inspection mirror very handy.

And if you don’t mind spending a bit more… a moisture meter is a good add to the list once you begin to drop a few more dollars on tools.

If you only want one ladder for now, a telescoping one may be good… gets onto lower roofs and also can be used for attic access in many homes.

Again you have been given a basic list add to it Reporting program (software) and a good not cheap moisture meter.
Go on some ride along inspections the best place to learn!



I used a volt detector (light stick) will light up if the wire is hot. Comes in handy in the attic crawl or wherever there is a loose wire to determine if it is currently hot. (hot or not it needs to be in a box with cover I know)

Some work gloves, dust mask for crawlspace. I would bring a nice clean towel to lay down in the hall (for attic access) before I put my ladder inside. Or to drape over the clothes in the closet where the attic lid is located to prevent spill of insulation. I also wore hospital slip ons for my shoes. The seller has thanked me more than once for that.

I don’t know if there is cold winter where you live but if it is, a voice recorder to take notes is better than a pencil and frosted fingers… :slight_smile:

To me the first thing on the list is a good Filter mask .
Wear it always before going into any attic .
I had a close friend get Bat dung disease can be deadly he was laid up for a long time ‘’

Histoplasmosis is another disease associated with bats. Its symptoms vary greatly, but the disease primarily affects the lungs. Occasionally, other organs are affected. When this happens it can be fatal if untreated.

Good add Roy. Bat quano can be nasty.

IMHO the best “tool” for a start up is joining InterNACHI.

Yes a voice recorder!
I used one and still carry it with me.

Use a voice tag in front of any dictation.
Electrical.: Upper bedroom outlet. Hot neutral. Take a photo.
Insulation: Attic: 8" inches of cellulose. Use your light stick. Use tape at one inch increments.
Put the light stick in the insulation until it hits the drywall. The tap marking record the depth. Take a photo
Plumbing: Kitchen; No independent shut off valve’s. Take a photo.

jsimard, If you wish I will email you a check list.
I used a check list for 2 years.

I concur.

Money is tight when your starting out, but one of my favorite tools has become my ladder. I now use the Xtend-Climb telescoping ladder. Check them out. I have the 780p (12.5 ft / 300 lb rating)

and the 785P (15.5 ft / 250 lb rating)

The customer service for repairs with XTend-Climb is awesome. First time was two years ago and the ladder was still under warranty. After some troubleshooting with a person over the phone they determined I needed a new ladder at no costs to replace. 1 day later it was at my door. Second time was last week and I wanted some parts to refurb my ladder and after talking on the phone with rep they are sending me the parts at no costs on a ladder that is now two years old, used almost everyday and sometimes multiple times that day and it’s not in warranty.

Hope this was helpful.

Action Plus Home Inspections
Tulsa, OK

Hi Robert, can I please have a copy of your check list. Please email it at david (at) asselin dot ca.

Thank you,


Home Gauge Software

Four things you must have in your toolkit as an inspector that money cannot buy you:

  1. Two Good Eyes
  2. Two Good Ears
  3. One careful mouth
  4. Thick Skin