ASHI Director and Legislative Committee Co-Chair Marvin Goldstein, ASHI member and California Coalition of Home Inspectors Chair Bob Fennema (also representing the California Real Estate Inspection Association) and ASHI Director of Chapter Relations & State Affairs Bob Kociolek represented ASHI at the Association of Real Estate License Law Organizations Home Inspector (ARELLO) Roundtable in Pasadena, Calif., April 25-26.
Photo: L to r: Bob Kociolek, ASHI director of chapter relations & state affairs; Marvin Goldstein, ASHI director and co-chair of the ASHI Legislative Committee; and Bob Fennema, ASHI/CREIA and chair of the California Coalition of Home Inspectors.
ASHI has a long-standing relationship with ARELLO. This important and influential group of regulators looks to us for expert information on the home inspection profession. The conference schedule this year included sessions on whether or not inspectors need to be regulated and, if so, how and by whom. In addition, a mock inspection of a local home was conducted by an ASHI member for the regulators.
A general session, “Don’t Get Railroaded by RESPA: What’s Compliant and HUD’s New Proposal,” was jointly facilitated by Ivy Jackson, director, Office of RESPA, and Andrew Fay, supervisory investigative coordinator.
This session proved to be of great interest to the ASHI delegation. HUD’s representatives made it clear that preferred-vendor relationships between inspectors and real estate professionals are a clear-cut violation of RESPA. Fay expressed HUD’s desire and ability to vigorously pursue such violations and encouraged those in attendance to advise constituents to forward as much evidence of such relationships as possible to HUD.
For more information on RESPA, RESPA violations and prosecution of preferred-vendor violations, see the official Web site at http://www.hud.gov/offices/hsg/sfh/res/respa_hm.cfm.
Washington and Georgia to license home inspectors
Washington became the 33rd state to regulate home inspectors when the governor signed a new licensing law on March 21. The law is effective June 12, 2008, and no one may inspect without a license beginning September 1, 2009. Grandfather provisions are in place for experienced inspectors.
To obtain a license, an inspector must provide proof of a minimum of 124 hours of classroom instruction approved by the board, up to 40 hours of field training supervised by a licensed home inspector and successful passage of the written exam as required. Licensees must complete 24 hours of continuing education in courses approved by the board every two years.
Inspections must conform to the standards of practice adopted by the governing board.
On May 17, Georgia HB 1217, which creates a licensing board for home inspectors, was sent to the governor for his signature (the governor does not have to sign the bill for it to become law). This replaces the current trade practice act.
To obtain a license, a person must complete a board-approved course of study of no less than 80 hours and pass a valid, reliable examination designed to test competence in home inspection practice that was developed pursuant to accepted psychometric standards promulgated by the American Educational Research
Association or similar organization acceptable to the board. As a condition of license renewal, a licensed home inspector shall complete 30 hours of board-approved continuing education during each renewal period of two years.
Standards of practice, prohibited acts and insurance requirements will be developed by the State Licensing Board of Home Inspectors.