How to become a
home inspector in Ohio
Last Updated: November 14, 2023
As you prepare to become a home inspector in Ohio, you probably have too many things to worry about. You have equipment to buy, marketing to do, and everything else that goes into pursuing this new venture. So, we wanted to help you out by making at least one thing easier and more accessible to you: the Ohio home inspector requirements for licensure. Don’t worry about searching through a thousand websites, and just follow the list below to start this exciting journey!
The Ohio Home Inspector Requirements
The Ohio Division of Real Estate & Professional Licensing manages and regulates the Ohio home inspector license requirements. Here is a list of requirements that you must meet before submitting your application:
- You must be at least 18 years old.
- Have a high school diploma, a GED, or the equivalent.
- Complete an 80-hour Ohio-approved home inspection course.
- Complete one of the following experiential options:
- Perform 10 parallel home inspections with reports reviewed by the supervising inspector.
- Complete a 40-hour field experience course for home inspectors that includes a peer review performed by a licensed inspector.
- Complete a state-approved exam.
- Submit fingerprints for a criminal background check.
- Provide proof of general liability insurance with minimum limits of $100,000 / $300,000.
- If performing pest inspections, you must carry errors and omissions insurance with minimum limits of $50,000 / $100,000.
Once you have everything ready, submit your application online, along with the $250 application fee, and you’ll have your license! But, for a more in-depth look, we break down the major requirements below.
Complete an approved home inspector course.
The Ohio home inspector requirements require you to successfully complete an 80-hour home inspection course. The course will cover various areas of home inspection, as well as lessons on how to run your inspection business. You can find a list of approved course providers here. As you take these courses, fill out the appropriate course information of the application form.
With this course, take it as an opportunity to begin your journey to become a home inspector in Ohio on the right foot. Aside from teaching you the necessary basics, these courses can help you network with other inspectors, meet experienced mentors, and ask any questions about marketing, inspecting, business setup, report writing, or any other necessary skill.
Complete one of the experiential options.
To fulfill the experiential part of the Ohio home inspector requirements, you have a couple options:
You must perform 10 parallel inspections supervised by a licensed home inspector. The rules for the parallel inspections come from Ohio Administrative Code Rule 1301:17-1-14. The supervising inspector must review, analyze, and correct (if necessary) the reports that you produce for those 10 inspections. For each inspection, you and your supervising inspector must sign the affidavit in Section C of the application form.
There are many courses that offer an in-field inspection experience for new inspectors. You can complete the experiential requirement by successfully completing a 40-hour field experience course for home inspectors (find the approved list of courses here). You will document this course and the course inspections in Section B of your application. Once you have completed the 40-hour course and inspections, you must complete a peer review. The rules for the peer review can be found in Ohio Administrative Code 1301:17-1-15.
Pass the National Home Inspector Exam.
Once you have completed your coursework, the next step to fulfilling the Ohio home inspector requirements is to take the National Home Inspector Exam (NHIE). The NHIE is a 200 question exam that covers various parts of home inspections, including aspects specific to your state.
To prepare for this exam, review the materials from your home inspector course, and also consider using study materials from the exam providers themselves. Also, ask other inspectors in your state about what parts of the exam they wish they had studied for more thoroughly. Doing all of this will keep you on track for passing the exam with flying colors!
To fulfill the Ohio home inspector insurance requirements, you must provide a proof of insurance document showing you carry at least these insurance limits:
General Liability / Bodily Injury and Property Damage Liability
Limits of $100,000 (per occurrence)/ $300,000 (aggregate) or more.
General liability covers any property damage or bodily injury to others caused by your inspection. For example, whether you leave a running faucet on and cause water damage, or someone hurts themselves after following you up your ladder (for future reference, we do not recommend this), you will be covered with general liability.
Insurance limits represent the total dollar amount your insurance company can pay toward your covered claims in a given policy period. You have two limits: your occurrence limit, which is the maximum amount the insurance company will pay per claim, and your aggregate limit, which is the maximum amount the insurance company will pay during the policy period (typically one year).
Wood Destroying Insect Inspectors
If you plan to offer wood destroying insect (WDI) inspections in addition to your normal residential inspections, the Ohio Department of Agriculture requires you to carry errors and omissions (E&O) insurance. in the following limits:
Professional Liability / Errors and Omissions
Limits of $50,000 (per occurrence)/ $100,000 (aggregate) or more
You will need to ensure that your E&O policy covers Pest inspections (it may be added through endorsement).
Regardless of whether or not you choose to offer pest inspections, however, we recommend that you carry E&O coverage, as the pairing of general liability insurance with E&O will protect your business. E&O protects you when your clients accuse you of missing something during their inspection, like signs of water damage—or, at the very least, not mentioning the damage in your report. In other words, you’re protected when clients accuse you of not doing your job right. Obtaining E&O insurance is one of the most important steps on the road to become a home inspector in Ohio, or anywhere for that matter.
Once you successfully bind (purchase) your coverage, you can request a proof of insurance from your insurance provider or broker, which you will submit along with your application.
Submit fingerprints for criminal background check.
Within 10 days after submitting your application to become a home inspector in Ohio, you will need to submit your fingerprints and an authorization form for a Criminal Records Check. Instructions for the Criminal Records Check can be found on the first page of the application at this link.
Congratulations from InspectorPro
We are so happy that you can begin this journey as a new home inspector in Ohio! You have taken a huge step toward fulfilling your new dream. We hope that this list of Ohio home inspector requirements has been helpful for you. Reach out if you have questions, need help, or want to protect your business with the best coverage available. We at InspectorPro are always grateful to serve you.