May, 2002
Feature
Inspection News and Views from the American Society of Home Inspectors



2001 Annual ASHI Chapter Reports

EDITED BY ASHI STAFF

PRO ASHI Chapter
Officers:
Tom O’Connor, president

Legislative activities
On Dec. 20, 2001, the state of Pennsylvania enacted legislation that essentially licensed home inspectors. Our Chapter worked with the Tri-State Chapter and others for several years to help shape the law to be beneficial to home inspectors. Highlights of the law require inspectors to belong to a nationally recognized non-profit home inspector organization that has a recognized test. ASHI clearly fits the bill, although there are other several organizations claiming they also comply. (Will our work ever be done?) The law also requires we carry E&O insurance, and that we’ve performed a minimum number of inspections. All things considered, it’s a good law.

Education highlights
Our monthly meetings provide educational benefits to members. In addition to sessions at the monthly meetings, we did a mock lawsuit trail and a group home inspection.

Goals
This year and next, the chapter is committed to improving public relations, specifically with the real estate community and other allied associations, much like ASHI has done over the past five years.

South Chapter
Officers:
Wes Carlisle, president
Larry Brooks, vice-president
Mike Ray, treasurer

Legislative activities
Alabama home inspectors face pending changes of the current Home Inspectors Registration Act (SB85) to a Licensure Act. While registration requirements are minimal, pending licensure requirements include adhering to an Alabama Home Inspectors Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice, successful completion of a test, and new insurance requirements. Licensure will be overseen by the Building Commission, and conducting EIFS inspections will require a separate license.

Education highlights
Educational seminars last year featured heat pump systems, report writing, inspection procedures and legislative issues.

Accomplishments
The chapter has six Members and four Candidates. Although small, we had another good year in 2001, and we received several calls about joining ASHI and the Chapter. We encourage our Candidates to become full Members for greater pride, confidence and professionalism in their business, and we continue to promote ASHI as we try to recruit new members.

South Carolina Chapter
Officers:
Michael Parker, president
Jay Roberts, vice-president
Bill Kruszenski, secretary
Frank Turner, treasurer,

Legislative activities
Efforts focused on persuading our state to accept a National Home Inspectors Exam as part of South Carolina’s Home Inspectors License requirement. We’re pleased to report the Labor, Licensing, and Regulations Department of SC (LLR) has asked SCASHI to participate in the formulation of the test to be used in the licensing requirements.

Education highlights
Educational sessions and chapter meetings featured speakers from Simpson Tie, McMillan Truss, Clemson University and ASHI past presidents Mark Cramer and John Ghent.

Accomplishments
Incorporated in 2000, the Chapter doubled its membership in the past year due to the leadership of our officers and the dedication of our members. After the Sept. 11 tragedy, our members each gave a $50 pledge to the Red Cross Fund.

Goals
We will host an Annual Chapter Conference in May, and continue to educate the public and real estate industry on the value of using ASHI Inspectors.

Southeast Chapter
Officers:
Rick Rogers, president

Legislative activity
The Chapter hired a lobbyist to monitor and represent our interests in the Georgia legislature. While no new bills were presented, we discussed with him the possibility of having our own bill ready in case some type of licensing or regulation is introduced. This year we will continue to use his services to monitor and advise us on what is happening.

Education highlights
The Chapter attracted new members with its quality educational programs. Education is the key to keeping the interest of the members; therefore, we’re starting this year with a program on Residential Code Updates to help members who are inspecting new homes.

Accomplishments
Offering free membership for first-time Candidates also encouraged chapter growth. Because of the positive response, this program will continue in 2002. Overall 2001 was a good year. 

Public relations
Our public relations efforts included members appearing on local TV and radio broadcasts and being quoted in news publications. Also, two members were taped for segments on HGTV.

Southern New England Chapter
Officers:
Jim Blonshine, president:

Legislative activities
Since our last report, several licensing issues surfaced, which required quick action by former chapter president Bill Stanley and our full-time legislative monitor. The state was slow in setting up the Home Inspection Licensing Board, which allowed cut-off dates for “grandfathering” to pass leaving many inspectors in a void between mandated dates and licensing requirements. A compromise solution was proposed by Bill Stanley, which required that some inspectors pass the National Home Inspection Examination (NHIE) to qualify for grandfathering.

Education highlights
The new administration got out of the blocks quickly by organizing and running a Radon Seminar, manning a booth at the two-day Connecticut Association of Realtors® Convention, and attending ASHI’s Leadership Conference, all during the month of October. The chapter’s emphasis on quality education has been our “No. 1 priority” so far this year. We have incorporated round-table discussions on inspection topics during dinner prior to the monthly meetings and also have a feature speaker as part of our formal business meetings. In cooperation with the State Department of Public Safety and local building officials, the chapter will present a 5-month series of presentations of safety requirements of new and used homes. In March, 2002, we will sponsor a day-long seminar on four inspection disciplines. Our seminars and many of our monthly programs earn ASHI MRCs  and state educational credits required for licensing.

Southern New Jersey Chapter
Officers:
Kevin J. Bradley, president
Richard Kraenbring, vice-president

Legislative activity
We anticipate a 50 to 100 percent increase in membership in the next two years, for the most part due to licensing and education requirements being instituted by the state of New Jersey.

Education highlights

We successfully organized the 2nd Annual Chapter Seminar.

Accomplishments

Entering its third year, the Chapter has the good fortune that half its 35 members have been ASHI members for more than 10 years. With an experienced Board of Directors, the Chapter was able to build a state-of-the-art Web site, and to exhibit at the regional PA, NJ, NY Realtors® convention in Atlantic City.

Public relations
All our volunteers deserve recognition, such as Peter Wilden, who serves two Boards including Tri-State ASHI; David Goldstein, who has held numerous chapter and national positions including ASHI Director; and Richard Kraenbring, who has been the backbone of the chapter’s large projects.

Southwest Chapter
Officers:
Robert K. Kraus, Sr., president
Mike LaBarre, vice-president
Paul LaBolt, treasurer
Patti Fige-Yutzy, secretary
Directors: Bill Mason, Mike Conley, Kirby Rowe
COR: Bob Walsh, John Myskowski

Education highlights
Guest speakers included Dr. Robert Scarry and Dr. Robert Collitti from the Health Department speaking on mold and mildew. Tom Albani of Robbins Engineering, Inc., gave a presentation on how to read and interpret truss engineering drawings, details and damage. COR representatives and directors got new facts and issues of interest at meetings.

Meetings are open to the public and local newspapers are notified. A bulletin board is posted with articles of interest, “First Thing,” guest speaker highlights and “What’s wrong with these photos,”  which parallels “Postcards from the field.”
A chapter library will be started, including videos or cassette tapes pertaining to the inspection or construction field.

Community service
Habitat for Humanity Day is scheduled for June and will include spouses.

Goals
By identifying our strengths and weaknesses, we will make ourselves the best informed inspectors possible through education and mentoring. The guest speakers will be chosen based on identified needs.

St. Louis Chapter
Legislative activities

House Bill 1723 for the Licensing of Home Inspectors was recently introduced to the 91st Missouri Legislature. Local ASHI leadership is taking a proactive role in assuring the bill upholds ASHI Standards and Code of Ethics, and serves the best interests of both consumers and inspectors. We are proud of the quality of leadership displayed by STL Members who are involved and willing to serve in both local and national positions of responsibility.

Education highlights
The St. Louis Chapter 14th Annual Spring Educational Seminar was a success. Held in March 2001, it was attended by ASHI members from throughout the Midwest.

Public relations
We continue to promote our members as a group and ASHI as an organization to the real estate community thorough the semi-annual distribution of our printed “list” of Chapter members. In addition, a list of current members can be downloaded from our upgraded Web site: www.stlouisashi.com. Other activities include sponsorship of the STL Realtors® annual “Superstar Banquet” and participation in the fund drive for Public Television’s KETC, Channel Nine. Various articles regarding our craft have been written by local members and published in local media.

Goals
The 2002 business plan includes a third education seminar and putting into action Mark Cramer’s prototype marketing plan.


Triangle Chapter
Officers: Bill Delamar, president
Jim Jackson, vice-president
Wilton Strickland, secretary
Robin Thomas, treasurer

Legislative activities
We monitor the bi-monthly meetings of the North Carolina Home Inspection Licensing Board, and our lobbyist, Henry Jones, who represents the three ASHI chapters in North Carolina, keeps us informed of legislative issues that may affect home inspections. The combined efforts of the NCAAC (North Carolina Associated ASHI Chapters) pushed through the requirement for a summary section with our reports, and defused an effort by the North Carolina Association of Realtors® to force a standardized report on inspectors. NC has been licensed since 1996, and we are more in a maintenance mode now. Complaints against home inspectors are down, and there doesn’t appear to be a need for drastic change in the near future.

Education highlights

The Chapter alternates with the other two Chapters in North Carolina to offer two, three-day conferences a year. We also feature a two-hour educational session at every other monthly meeting.

Community service
The chapter lead the way in providing volunteers to the Red Cross to do Preliminary Damage Assessment Surveys following disasters. Currently, about one third of our membership is involved at varying stages of certification to perform this service. The other ASHI Chapters and the North Carolina Licensed Home Inspection Association have also become involved, and we all plan to make this an ongoing commitment. Our local Memorandum of Understanding with the state Red Cross chapter will hopefully provide our greatest public relations success.

Accomplishment
The vision of all the Chapters in this state has provided something to build on. We make minor adjustments as necessary. As the only State with our own licensing exam (thanks to national ASHI and the efforts of our local members) and several ASHI members on the Licensing Board, we control the standards licensees must meet. The Licensing Board is under the umbrella of the North Carolina Department of Insurance, not the Board of Realtors® or the Home Builders Association, so we can protect the public without undue political pressure.