Information for home buyers, home inspectors, and real estate professionals in Washington DC

Become a Home Inspector

What are the laws for becoming a home inspector in Washington DC?

Professional Home Inspection Institute offers an online certification course for home inspectors that meets all Washington, DC requirements for home inspectors including Washington, DC regulations for trade practices and consumer protection. There is not currently a state test or home inspection specific license needed in Washington, DC, therefore, after graduation from the Professional Home Inspection Institute course, you can start inspecting right away!

Many Realtors, Lenders, home buyers, and home owners want to make sure a home inspector has been properly trained and certified. Professional Home Inspection Institute's certification will give you a nationally recognized home inspector certification and the credentials you need to become a successful home inspector in Washington, DC. Becoming certified now may also make you eligible to be "grandfathered in" when new licensing laws or stricter regulations take effect.

Is it necessary to have my home inspected by a licensed home inspector?

If you are interested in buying a home, in many cases the underwriter of the loan will want a home inspection done. In this case, a home inspection will have to be done. In some cases the underwriter will not require a home inspection. In this case, having a home inspection done is optional but generally very highly recommended; a home inspection is very inexpensive compared to the cost of the property you are considering purchasing.
There are countless cases of home inspections that uncovered major defects in homes that would have cost thousands of dollars to fix or replace. Some of these defects may not be visible to the naked eye or may require tools or other equipment to diagnose. In most cases, a home inspection is a cost-effective way to sleep better at night when purchasing a home.

What national organizations should a reputable home inspector be a part of?

It depends on the licensing and training requirements of the state, but there are several national non-profit home inspector organizations that are well-known and maintain standards of ethics and practices that home inspectors may belong to. One of them is the National Society of Home Inspectors (NSHI). All Professional Home Inspection Institute graduates receive a one-year, $199 membership to NSHI. Because this is a non-profit society, there is no conflict of interest. - NSHI puts standards forth that its' members must adhere to, and its' main goal is to maintain that reputation of excellence - not to sell training courses. For this reason, being a member of NSHI is something to be proud of, and is a credential you can proudly display on your marketing material, website, business card, or company vehicle.

How extensive is the training to become a home inspector?

The minimum course that the Professional Home Inspection Institute offers for home inspection is a 90-hour course. This is the equivalent of about two weeks of in-classroom training, so it is a significant time investment. Because our course is taken online via interactive course management, however, it can be taken at night, on the weekend, or whenever is convenient. This means that any graduate of PHII has a rigorous training and education as a home inspector.
However, PHII offers many advanced courses and offers training for other related fields as well, including (but not limited to) mold inspection and remediation, weatherization, and infrared thermography. Click here to view all available training courses.  
If you are looking for a home inspector, rest assured that a graduate of PHII is well-trained, and has access to a network of industry experts in the home inspection and construction fields.

Why should I consider training to become a home inspector?

In much the same way that any other career choice is made, some of the reasons are personal, but there are several rational reasons to consider home inspecting as a career or as a source of additional income. For one, there is a genuine need - every time a home is purchased, there is the possibility an inspection will be required. And there are a lot of homes in the DC area! There is also the undeniable fact that home inspectors are well paid - home inspections can command several hundred dollars each - higher for larger homes, less for smaller properties.
Even in bad economic times real estate still changes hands, so there is an element of income stability and predictability to consider, as well. 

Final Note to Consider:
As the industry grows, many states are enacting or changing legislation mandating training/testing for home inspectors. Professional Home Inspection Institute certified inspectors have had great success passing state and national exams, and also receive free continuing education credits with enrollment.

For more information about home inspection licensing or to ask questions about the courses provided by Professional Home Inspection Institute, call 1-800-983-6322 toll-free six days a week, 12 hours a day.