Tips to hiring the right home inspector

Are you gearing up to purchase your dream home? While some sellers might want to expedite the closing process and bypass the inspection, doing a home inspection before committing to a home is always recommended. Hiring a reputable home inspector is one of the most critical steps in the home-buying process. A thorough inspection can unveil potential issues with the property, giving you peace of mind and saving you from costly repairs down the line. It can also provide insight into what to expect in a few years so the new homeowner can plan and budget immediately. To ensure you choose the right inspector for the job, consider these seven expert tips:

Check Qualifications and Credentials

Not all home inspectors are created equal. Look for inspectors certified by reputable associations like the Canadian Association of Home and Property Inspectors. To become a member, inspectors must meet professional and educational requirements. The CAHPI established the most widely recognized home inspection standards across Canada. There are also provincial associations to explore for home inspectors.

Experience Matters

While certifications are essential, experience is equally crucial. Look for inspectors with several years of experience in the field. Experienced inspectors are more likely to catch subtle issues that less seasoned inspectors might overlook. Don’t hesitate to ask how many inspections they’ve performed and how long they’ve been in business.

Ask for Sample Reports

A comprehensive inspection report is invaluable when making a purchasing decision. Before hiring an inspector, ask to see a sample report. Look for detailed and easy-to-understand reports, including photographs of any issues. A well-documented report will help you understand the property’s condition and negotiate repairs with the seller if necessary.

Consider Specialized Inspections

Depending on the age and type of the property, you may need specialized inspections beyond a standard home inspection. For example, older homes may require additional lead paint, asbestos, or mold inspections. Similarly, properties with well and septic systems may need separate inspections. Discuss your specific needs with potential inspectors to ensure they can accommodate them.

Attend the Inspection

While not always possible, attending the home inspection can provide valuable insights into the property’s condition. It allows you to ask questions, receive real-time explanations of any issues found, and gain a better understanding of the home’s systems. If you can’t attend in person, consider scheduling a video call during the inspection to participate remotely.

Get Referrals and Read Reviews

Word of mouth is often the best way to find a reliable home inspector. Ask your real estate agent, friends, family, and colleagues for recommendations. Additionally, take the time to read online reviews and testimonials. Pay attention to feedback regarding the inspector’s thoroughness, professionalism, and communication skills. When working with a real estate agent, they will likely have one or two familiar contacts. Don’t hesitate to ask your agent for their recommendations as well.

Don’t Focus Solely on Price

While cost is undoubtedly a factor, it shouldn’t be the sole determinant when choosing a home inspector. Quality and thoroughness are far more important than saving a few dollars upfront. Remember, an experienced and reputable inspector may uncover issues that could later cost you thousands of repairs. Invest in a thorough home inspection to protect your investment in the long run.


Hiring the right home inspector is crucial when purchasing a home. By checking qualifications, considering experience, reviewing sample reports, seeking specialized inspections, attending the home inspection, seeking referrals, and prioritizing quality over price, you can ensure that you make an informed decision and avoid any unpleasant surprises down the road. Take the time to research and choose an inspector you trust, and you’ll be one step closer to confidently owning your dream home.

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