January, 2002
ASHI Community
Inspection News and Views from the American Society of Home Inspectors

Help Your Neighbors


Give back to your community and build bonds in your chapter by participating in a volunteer effort. Designate April as ASHI Chapter Community Service Month. Just a day of your time can make a difference.

Protecting our kids

The Protecting Our Kids from Disasters program gives you all the information you need to lead a day of retrofitting a child care center in your community.

This is a summary of how it works. Start by talking to local building and emergency management officials to determine what nonstructural retrofit techniques make sense for your community. Next, meet with the owner or operator of the child care center and discuss the program, the retrofits they may need, and why and how to cover the cost of materials. If the center wants to participate, inspect the center to see what needs to be done and what supplies will be needed. Set a date to do the work. It usually takes less than a day for 10-15 volunteers.

Protecting Our Kids from Disasters is a program developed by the Institute for Home and Business Safety(IHBS) because children are often the most vulnerable victims in natural disasters.

Rebuilding Together®

The mission of Rebuilding Together® is to preserve and revitalize houses and communities, assuring that low-income homeowners, particularly those who are elderly and disabled and families with children, live in warmth, safety, and independence. As the largest volunteer home rehabilitation organization in America, Rebuilding Together® work takes place in 865 cities and towns in all 50 states.
To easily find a project near you, go to www.rebuildingtogether.org and click on “Find a Program Near You.” You’ll find a directory by state with contacts in different areas.

Take the plunge

Taking the first step to volunteering can be the most difficult. Involving your chapter members makes it easier and more fun. After all, many hands make light work.
If your chapter participates in a community service program, take some pictures and let us know about it, so we can feature the activity in the June ASHI Reporter. Email sandyb@ashi.com.

Mel Chalfen retires

ASHI New England would like to express its congratulations to Mr. Melvin H. Chalfen (Member #000079) on the occasion of his retirement from the home inspection profession.  Mel has been a home inspector, lecturer, author since 1957.  He was a founding member of the New England Chapter, and has shared his experience, knowledge, and philosophy with other ASHI Members from the beginning. Mel has received the ASHI National Member of the Year and the Frank Long awards. His belief in excellence in our field and his dedication to educating himself and his colleagues led to the creation of the Mel Chalfen award given biannually to a worthy member of the New England Chapter.  Mel was the first recipient of that award in 2000.

His career is characterized by his insatiable appetite for education to improve the services he offers homebuyers, and his unwavering dedication to the ASHI Standards of Practice and Code of Ethics.  Everyone performing professional home inspections today owes Mel Chalfen a debt of gratitude.  He is truly one of the pioneers of our profession.

Mel will continue to keep tabs on the ASHI and the New England chapter and welcomes all who would like to remain in touch with him.