July, 2011
Feature
Inspection News and Views from the American Society of Home Inspectors



ASHI ACI: The Gold Standard

BRENDAN RYAN

The ASHI Certification Committee recently released certification documents to all members who have attained ACI status. The documents unveiled the new Certified Inspector gold seal logo and included marketing information.

I designed the logo to carry on the visibility of ASHI, the most recognized insignia in the profession, yet be distinctive in its own right. The photographic negative format makes it brighter than its solid counterpart. Placement of the logo on a seal provides a universally accepted symbol of highest quality and achievement. The chosen background color announces that ASHI and its NCCA-accredited Certified Inspector program are the gold standard of the home inspection profession.

The Certified Inspector logo has been trademarked for use only by persons who have reached this level of competency within ASHI. The logo and logo use policy are available on the ASHI website in the Downloads & Forms and  Publications sections. Logo use is similar to our current policy. The term Certified Inspector is required below the logo. The logo shall be presented in the black-on-gold color format. Use of the acronym ACI after the name of an ASHI Certified Inspector is allowed and verifiable by having completed an NCCA-accredited certification program.

The distinctive gold standard logo and ACI acronym provide marketing opportunities for qualified inspectors to differentiate themselves from their competition. In general, they signify a higher level of experience and tested knowledge. For those in regulated states, these symbols promote the inspector's dedication to excellence by going beyond the requirements of state licensing and maintaining ASHI Certified Inspector status as well.

 ACI status is an individual achievement. Inspectors who qualify for use of the gold seal logo are encouraged to use it on marketing materials, vehicles and websites. There is a "Verify My Certification" link that ACIs can put on their website that will take clients to an ASHI page that confirms ACI status. This personalized link is available by emailing ASHI HQ, hq@ashi.org. It is a great marketing tool. Multi-inspector firms may identify individual employees by using the logo and link within their marketing programs.

Historically, the ability to use an acronym after one's name has been reserved for persons who have reached a level of independently certified competence. Today, while the term certified and placing letters after your name have become grossly abused, it is important to know that ASHI Certified Inspector is one of the few legally recognized through accreditation. The NCCA evaluates parent organizations for viability and integrity, along with their certification programs, for fairness, reliability and means of recertification. No other home inspection association has met this level of scrutiny or has the ability to issue this level of certification.

ACIs can display and use their certification with confidence as it is based on a true and verifiable third-party accreditation. They can use it with confidence that ASHI is the leader and voice of the profession. And, with confidence that they are the gold standard: ASHI Certified Inspectors.