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How can you obtain certification as a building inspector?

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Quick Answer

The method of obtaining certification as a building inspector varies depending on the state, but it usually involves an examination. Before doing that, however, prospects must have a minimum level of education and experience in the construction sector. Other typical requirements include a valid driver's license and an appropriate level of liability insurance cover.

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Full Answer

The exams that are required are often those run by the American Society of Home Inspectors, or ASHI, or the National Association of Home Inspectors, or NAHI. It is normally a requirement to become a member of one of these organizations in order to become a building inspector and, in order to become a member, candidates must take the examination. One of the common exams is the National Home Inspector Examination. It covers inspection systems, reporting and professional practices, as well as a range of building systems. Examples of those are exterior systems, roofing systems, structural systems and plumbing systems.

The minimum level of education that is required before taking the exam is often a high school diploma, but it might be higher than this in some states. Direct training and experience in a trade — such as an electrician, plumber or carpenter — is essential.

In total, 35 states have specific requirements that have to be met in order to become a certified building inspector, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Most of those require inspectors to undergo ongoing training and assessment throughout their careers.

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