December, 2002

Inspection News and Views from the American Society of Home Inspectors

Business Operations Study Helps Answer the Question: "Why Participate?"


This month I would like to discuss some aspects of the ASHI Home Inspection Business Operations Study, 2002, which is now available to the Membership at a significant discount.

Reading the study I noticed the respondents felt that ASHI Chapter public relations and the ASHI Web site Referral were the second and third most important promotional methods. (You have to buy the study to find out what respondents felt was the most important.) This demonstrates, at least to me, the importance of chapter participation. It was interesting to note that 25 percent of the respondents did not belong to an ASHI Chapter. What marketing and networking opportunities these inspectors are missing.

Benefits of joining a Chapter

There is an exceptional value in the Web site Referral program, since it is a membership benefit. I personally receive many leads from it. The audience for the Web site is huge. Obviously, the more eyes that can see your marketing the more it will result in bookings.

Chapters have the power of numbers in marketing. Not only is there more acceptance by the media of non-profit associations, there is also the benefit of the economy of scale.  Many Chapters participate in public relations efforts to raise the visibility of the home inspection profession. Many also publish lists of Members for distribution to real estate professionals and other groups. These efforts are usually accomplished at little or no cost to the Members other than the chapter dues. Sure there is some time involved, but the payback is phenomenal.

Another item I noticed in the Study was more than 60 percent of the re-spondents indicated up to 20 percent of their business referrals come from other inspectors. This alone is reason enough to join and/or become active in your nearest ASHI chapter. My personal experience is that more than 20 percent of my referrals came from other inspectors. I know that would not have happened had I not been active in the chapter. Other inspectors have to know who you are and trust your capabilities to refer business.

What’s my point? Well, obviously I am waxing the benefits of joining and being active in an ASHI chapter. The benefits certainly outweigh the time and money expended. I recommend it highly. If there is no chapter nearby, start one. Our Chapter Relations Committee has extensive assistance available. Those who attended the Chapter Leadership Day in October were treated to a great day and provided with information about all aspects of chapter operations.

I can’t believe next month is my last President’s Message. Rich Matzen will be your 2003 President. The time sure went fast. I do take some satisfaction in believing the Board of Directors, committees and staff completed some significant tasks this year, and we have raised the professionalism of the profession of home inspection.
Take care, and we’ll talk next month.