Inspect the inspector!

Proper credentials and background in building key

Experienced inspectors will notice any deficiencies and know how to deal with them.




Buying residential or commercial real estate is a serious venture with some potentially significant risks. Selecting

the right property inspector can greatly reduce the associated risks, and the following information will help you

understand the process.


What qualifications should an inspector have?


Check the inspector's credentials. A "certified inspector" with the designation CPI or CHI signifies that he or she is

certified under a government act and recognized by the courts and other professional bodies. There are two

bodies that regulate home inspectors in B.C.: the Canadian Association of Home & Property Inspectors (B.C.) and

the Applied Sciences Technologists & Technicians of B.C.


A background in the building industry, as well as in the inspection field, is an asset. If you have not built or repaired

it, how can you inspect it?


A qualified inspector is required to have a good working knowledge of:

- building envelopes

- structural components

- plumbing systems

- heating systems

- electrical systems

- roofing

- ventilation

- hazardous materials, i.e., asbestosrelated items such as Zonolite insulation


The inspector needs to understand how all the components listed above function and how they work together as a

system. The ability to communicate this information to the client is also important.


An experienced, perceptive inspector should notice design defects and signs of structural or component

deficiencies (including unprofessional workmanship). Followup information from the inspector should include the

"how to or who to" make the necessary corrections.


Accepting a referral for an inspector through your realtor is not something I recommend. Make certain the

inspector is working in your interest. Realtor/ inspector relationships are a cause for concern within our industry.

As of March 31, 2009, all inspectors in B.C. need to be licensed under the Consumer Protection B.C.


How much should a house inspection cost?


It can cost thousands of dollars to sell an average Vancouver house, yet people are sometimes surprised at a

$500 to $600 fee to inspect the same property.


The inspection of an average 2,500-square-foot house by a qualified inspector should cost around $400 to $600.

The inspection should include a detailed written report complete with pictures in electronic form and a

walkthrough with the client. There should also be time for followup discussion. Allow five to six hours for a

thorough inspection.


Bottom line: The purchase of your home is one of the biggest financial commitments you will ever make. Do your

homework, ask the right questions and do not base your selection of a property inspector on price alone.


No comments

Post Your Comment:

Your email will not be published
Reciprocity Logo The data relating to real estate on this website comes in part from the MLS® Reciprocity program of either the Greater Vancouver REALTORS® (GVR), the Fraser Valley Real Estate Board (FVREB) or the Chilliwack and District Real Estate Board (CADREB). Real estate listings held by participating real estate firms are marked with the MLS® logo and detailed information about the listing includes the name of the listing agent. This representation is based in whole or part on data generated by either the GVR, the FVREB or the CADREB which assumes no responsibility for its accuracy. The materials contained on this page may not be reproduced without the express written consent of either the GVR, the FVREB or the CADREB.