January, 2005
You Tell Us
Inspection News and Views from the American Society of Home Inspectors



A Member's Take on Branding

EDITED BY ASHI STAFF

To the editor:

Much has already been said about branding, and I have heard lots of criticism about the extra money that has been assigned each Member by ASHI. I would like to offer a view that you may not have thought about yet.

Think of the $200 increase as a form of advertising. When broken down, the cost is only $1.83 a day. I ask you, can you advertise in a local newspaper for that amount?
Can you put your name in a regional Realtor® publication for that? Can you buy time on a local radio station that tells potential clients that your services are available?

What does your Web site cost you, and how many inspections come from that? If you can do all that for only $200, anybody who offers a service or product will beat a path to your door. If you get one more inspection from this, it has already paid for itself.

The added cost to our dues not only helps us as individual inspectors, but it helps all ASHI inspectors. We all want to be known as professional inspectors. Look at the ASHI Web site—could you afford to maintain such a site and still inspect?

Branding also helps in states where state licensing has occurred or will occur. What will separate you from the other inspectors? Will you lower your standards to compete? Will you lower your price?

Was the branding program done perfectly? Well, you decide that, but was your first advertising a great success, did you get lots of inspections? I may not be the greatest marketing person in the world, but I do understand now that branding is a step in the right direction. If you don’t believe it, look at all the new home inspector organizations that are popping up around the country. None have the members, standards, or organization that we have. I joined ASHI over 10 years ago because I wanted to be the best inspector I could be. We are all taking the right step to the future. I urge you to support branding at the national level and at your local chapter level.

As a member of the Great lakes Chapter, we are approaching 300 members and have a very strong Branding Committee. Why can’t smaller chapters network with other chapters in your state or region to pool your branding money? One tree may not make a lot of color in the fall, but a forest of trees does make a sight to behold.
Inspect safe.

David Flaskamp, Member
Heartwood Home Inspection, Inc.
Gilberts, Ill.

What’s on your mind?

Letters are welcomed as well as Postcards from the Field, Chapter News and Viewpoints. Send your contribution to:

Sandy Bourseau, ASHI Reporter
932 Lee St., Des Plaines, IL 60016
Email: sandyb@ashi.org