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Allen
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I am looking into getting into the HI industry and was trying to figure out if most inspectors relied mostly on buyers inspections. I have read a few post that make me think they have other services that they do or offer such as draw or phase inspections. I personally do not want to do these kind of inspections because the money does not seem worth the time or gas money. Would it be possible to do some kind of economy type inspection that is not as thorough or just covers one or two systems? This might get the business of people who think an inspection is too expensive. I am just trying to look into some things that could diversify business a little. Any thoughts are greatly appreciated.

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Allen,

Not to be a wet blanket or anything, but do you realize how many HI businesses are going bottom-up right now due to the lack of business? Even in the hottest markets in the best of times it's very difficult to get work as an inexperienced inspector and be able to hold on long enough to start getting enough work to make a living on. With the number of inspectors that have been going out of business lately you are probably going to end up wishing you'd tried something else.

It's your life, but if it were me looking at this business right now I'd probably wait for the market to solidly rebound so that there will be more than enough work for the experienced guys. That way at least I can get the work that they can't handle and work my way up. Right now, I'm not sure you'd get any work.

ONE TEAM -ONE FIGHT!!!

Mike

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I have checked all of the requirements and I realize it may be tough getting my foot in the door. However, the plan is to be part time for the first couple of years while still working at my current job. Again I know it will be tough but I think it will be worth it if I can build some contacts now so that when the market does bounce back I will be ready. Personally I was expecting to do about 50 inspections the first year, 100 the second, 150 the third, until I was up around 250. Is this expecting too much?

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I have checked all of the requirements and I realize it may be tough getting my foot in the door. However, the plan is to be part time for the first couple of years while still working at my current job. Again I know it will be tough but I think it will be worth it if I can build some contacts now so that when the market does bounce back I will be ready. Personally I was expecting to do about 50 inspections the first year, 100 the second, 150 the third, until I was up around 250. Is this expecting too much?

Yes. Those number are typical in a climate where lots of houses are selling.

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Al,

I followed your link and did a little thinking.

Please understand I am neutral about folks entering this business.

If you "run the numbers" it indicates approx 12% decline in sales. I would ask how many of those sales are residential houses? How many of the 3400+- sales had an inspection? Would you really expect a dynamic real estate agent to be factually objective? My reading is "Golly, Shreveport is booming(will be) and now is the time to call me and buy a house!"

Around here 3400 sales is about what a large real estate company does per year. I'd guess maybe half would have an inspection and that number would be divided among 40+ inspectors and various relatives leaving the new guy with 42.5 inspections per year. Not bad for the first year in business. If you really put the pencil to it, that would be approx 12,000 less license fee, insurance, fuel, software, etc.

I do believe home inspection is very easy to get into and very difficult to stay "into". The public really does not have a clue what to expect and it is not in the real estate agents interest to explain. I don't think regulation has had much impact on raising the bar.

This is not a simple topic.

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In my area, the Greater Nashville Board of Realtors reported that 3,850 homes were sold last month and that was down by 15% from last year. Even at 3,850 home sales we have inspectors dropping like flies.

Now, if you want to start learning the profession, get your training and get your testing out of the way so when the market does turnaround, I think now is a good time to do it. But, you need to make sure that you have a real job that is paying you, a spouse with a very good job or you have just won the lottery.

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I'm in my 2nd year. I did about 25 jobs in the first year and I don't expect it to get better this year because of the market drop.

One thing a newby won't realize when in the "idea" stage is the level of liability and how it creates a significant amount of stress. I felt the stress all through the first year. I still feel it now. It only gets slightly better as time goes by. I expect it to be a while before I get housed securely inside a comfort zone.

After a year and a half in business, if I add all my income and subtract all my expenses, it's a net loss. Of course the startup costs are mainly the reason but the big picture is not that pretty. No yet anyway. I'm vested for a while and not a quitter. I'll keep poking along for a while and see how things go.

Maybe this is easy to get into, but it's surely not an easy business.

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