How do you become a home inspector in Colorado?
What are the requirements?
In truth — Nothing.
The State of Colorado doesn’t require you to carry a license or certificate to practice as a home inspector.
That makes entering the industry really easy.
But that also means you’ll have a lot of competition…
So you better think of ways to set yourself apart.
We’ve got that covered for you in this complete guide on how to become a home inspector in Colorado…
How to Become A Home Inspector in Colorado – The 5 Steps to Standing Out
If you want to be the best home inspector out there, you’ll need to go through these 5 steps:
- Complete a Home Inspection Training
- Pass the National Home Inspector Exam (NHIE)
- Explore Employment Opportunities
- Build Connections
- Read up on the Colorado business laws (if you want to establish a firm!)
Remember, these aren’t requirements.
But it’s a surefire way to succeed in your home inspector career.
Don’t worry — we’ll walk you through each step and provide you with all the essential information.
Step #1: Complete a Home Inspection Training
What makes a good home inspector?
One that has all the knowledge about home inspecting, of course.
Yes, you must be able to write reports that accurately reflect your finding.
Yes, you must know how to deal with buyers and sellers (after all, you’re providing a service, so relationships are key.).
However, report writing and relationship-building skills can only take you so far.
You need KNOWLEDGE.
And this is why it’s so important to take a Home Inspection Training.
Fortunately for you, there are several training courses in Colorado.
Here are some you can check out:
- American Home Inspectors Training (AHIT). With three packages, you can choose which fits your needs (and budget) best. However, all options include exam prep and insurance. AHIT is an affiliate of The CE Shop, an established online real estate school.
- Professional Home Inspection Institute (PHII). PHII offers a 90-hour program that you can take online. That makes it convenient for those who have busy schedules. What sets them apart is that its package includes a 1-year membership to the North American Association of Home Inspectors (AHI).
- The ASHI School. Online training may be convenient, but it’s not for everyone. If you’re a tactile learner, you may prefer the school’s methodology — pre-class exercises, in-person classes, and field training for various inspecting situations.
- Kaplan Real Estate Education (Kapre). You can choose between a home study course or one delivered through online videos. Kapre goes beyond the essentials. It also offers an OnDemand course on building your own home inspection business.
- ATI Training. If you’re looking for a more structured approach (because self-paced isn’t your thing), ATI might be a good option. Although they also offer online classes, you can opt for their in-person alternatives. These come with set schedules, but you can check out if there are night or weekend options.
Which one is the best?
It depends on your preferences and resources.
Don’t forget to compare what providers offer (not just their rates) before deciding where to train.
Step #2: Pass the National Home Inspector Exam (NHIE)
Do you need to take the National Home Inspector Exam?
Remember, Colorado is an unregulated state.
Should you take the National Home Inspector Exam?
It will add credibility to your name as a home inspector.
Moreover, it’s an excellent way to show that you’re more than certified — you’re qualified to be a professional home inspector.
If so, then you can register and schedule for the NHIE with PSI (the exam handler in Colorado).
But here’s the thing.
It’s best to take time to prepare for the NHIE.
(We’ll give you some preparation tips in the FAQ section below!)
For one, it’s not cheap.
The testing fee is $225 (and that’s only good for one attempt).
For another, it’s a lengthy exam.
The NHIE consists of 200 items (with 25 pre-test questions). You’ll have 4 hours to answer everything.
Now, the exam is scored like the SAT — your score can be anywhere between 200 to 800.
To pass, you must score above 500.
To learn more about the National Home Inspector Exam, you can read through the official handbook.
Step #3: Explore Employment Opportunities
It’s time to go out and look for employment.
The great news is that there’s no lack of home inspection firms in Colorado.
You can check for companies that are hiring.
Here are just some of the top home inspection firms in Colorado:
|NOTE: Some higher home inspection companies implement their own requirements. This can include a high school diploma or GED, insurance, a clean background check, etc…
Make sure to look into this before applying.
If you get hired, then you can now start working as a home inspector.
Now, there are some that want to advance their career even more.
If that’s you, then you should work towards being your own boss.
Yes, setting up your own home inspection company.
Of course, it will take time.
Use your employment years to gain the necessary skills and experience.
Also, you should…
Step #4: Build Connections
Quick fact: 58% of homebuyers find home inspectors from their real estate agents.
Do you know what that means?
You need to build relationships with real estate agents and others in the industry.
If you want your home inspection business to prosper, you need all the connections you can get.
One option is to join organizations like the International Association of Certified Home Inspectors (InterNACHI) or the American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI).
This will not only help you build a network…
Being a member of these organizations will ensure people that your home inspection business is legit.
How do you build a network?
Consider these things:
- Don’t rush it. Relationships take time. Exert the effort to nurture it.
- Don’t be uber-friendly too early. Be friendly, but keep it professional. Diving too much into the personal aspect of your life may make people uncomfortable. It may happen eventually, but you must let it happen organically.
- Memory is a powerful tool. Keep track of names, birthdays, occasions, and other things that may have come up during conversations. Remembering these make people feel connected to you.
And when you have a strong connection system, people will be willing to recommend your home inspection services to their clients, friends, family, etc…
Step #5: Read Up on the Colorado Business Laws
If you want to establish your own company, you need to work on a business permit.
You also need to follow all the Colorado laws to own a business. So don’t forget to research about that.
Frequently Asked Questions About Home Inspectors in Colorado
How Do You Prepare for the NHIE?
There are many ways to prepare for the National Home Inspector Exam.
For one, you can study your Home Inspector Training program diligently. This will have most of the answers in the test.
You can also choose to go through the National Home Inspector Exam Handbook. This will help you determine what topics or areas are covered in the test.
What about the testing environment?
A lot of home inspector programs provide exam prep courses or exercises. It’s a good idea to take advantage of that so you know how the questions go, what the testing environment is like, and all that.
And yes, you can find FREE NHIE practice tests online, too.
How Much Do Home Inspectors Earn in Colorado?
As of August 2023, home inspectors in Colorado earn an average of $52,597 per year. That equates to $25 an hour.
Of course, the actual figure will vary depending on where you live, your experience, your skill set, your certifications, your employment (or self-employment), etc…
Do You Need Insurance if You’re a Home Inspector in Colorado?
Financial protection is always a good idea, especially when establishing a business.
If you plan on having an office, consider getting general liability insurance.
This protects you against costs from property damage, bodily injury, reputational damage, and copyright infringement.
Otherwise, you can opt for professional liability insurance (errors and omissions).
This is best suited for service providers and helps pay legal fees if someone claims you made an error.
How Long Does a Home Inspection Usually Take?
Most home inspections last between three to four hours. That makes it perfect for weekend work if you’re only starting out and doing it as a side hustle.
And that is how to become a home inspector in Colorado.
To get started, it’s SUPER easy.
All you need to do is:
- Undergo a home inspection training program
- Pass the NHIE exam
- Find employment
But if you want to have your own home inspection business, then the steps are a bit more complicated.
Among other things, you need to:
- Build connections
- Work on the Colorado business laws
Whatever the case, best of luck to you!