Running a home inspection business is a fantastic career with huge money earning potential, particularly in the current housing market. Homebuyers need inspections to not only give them peace of mind that they are making a wise investment but also to enable them to obtain home insurance and financing. That means that a quality home inspector is a hot property (excuse the pun).
When you have finished your home inspection training and have obtained all your certifications, your next step is to invest in your home inspection kit. Here are 17 essential tools that every home inspector should have in their kit.
1. Tool Bag And Belt
First off, you’ll need a large and strong tool bag to transport all of your tools as well as a tool belt to enable you to keep lighter pieces such as screwdrivers on you while you work.
2. Computer With Home Inspection Software
Submitting hand-written reports is a thing of the past, so it’s important to get yourself a computer with specialist home inspection software.
These home inspection tools will increase your efficiency and professionalism whether you choose to take handwritten notes and then type them up later, or you take a tablet or laptop with you to the inspection. Of course, it’s still worth keeping a notebook and pen handy as a back-up.
3. Several Sizes Of Flashlights
It’s important to have not just one but several sizes of the flashlight to suit different situations. You may need a headlight, for example, to explore attics and a large spotlight to illuminate areas that are difficult to access.
4. Shoe Covers
Shoe covers are a great way to ensure you don’t introduce mud or dirt into the property. You can find thin versions for indoor inspections as well as rubber shoe covers, which also provide protection in muddy areas.
5. Telescoping Mirror
To get a look at those awkward areas in the home, you should invest in a telescoping mirror that will bend around high and low corners.
6. Measuring Tape
You will need a measuring tape to take measurements of room dimensions and window height.
7. Set Of Screwdrivers
Keep a range of screwdrivers on you as you will be surprised just how often you might need them. A power screwdriver is also handy when removing electrical panel covers.
8. Electrical GFCI Outlet Tester
To test GFCI outlets and detect switched wires or non-grounded outlets, you will need a GFCI tester. Find out more about types of electrical testers.
9. Gas And Carbon Monoxide Detectors
While they are more costly than some items of kit, these detectors can give you an advantage over your competition as not all home inspectors will be able to check for gas safety issues, and homebuyers would need to hire another professional to do this.
10. Voltage Detector
An essential piece of safety equipment is the voltage tester, which will save you from coming into contact with unsafe electricals.
11. Thermometer And Probe
You will need a thermometer to check external temperatures and also the air conditioning system. Infrared thermometers are particularly effective. A probe will help you to identify dry rot and termite infestations.
12. Moisture Meter
You can test to see if a stain in a wall is active by inserting a moisture meter. This is essential if you are testing for EIFS.
13. Extendable Ladder And Step Ladder
In addition to a step ladder, you should invest in a non-conductive and extendable ladder, which will give you plenty of flexibility and won’t cause a safety issue with power lines.
Whether you choose to walk on roofs or not is up to you, but a set of binoculars can enable you to check the condition of the roof from a ladder if it is unsafe to walk on.
15. Digital Camera
A high-quality digital camera is an integral part of any home inspector’s kit as your clients will want to see detailed photographs of the issues you find in the home. The camera should be able to focus on poor light and be easy to operate in awkward positions.
16. Protective Clothing
To protect your clothes and body from dirt or other unpleasant materials in the crawl space or attic, get yourself a good set of protective clothing.
This should include coveralls and gloves to protect your hands from sharp objects or nasty pests while you’re crawling.
A face mask is also important to prevent mold spores from entering your system and for exploring attics as they may contain asbestos.
17. Spare Batteries And Lightbulbs
Finally, remember to carry a stash of spare batteries and lightbulbs to ensure you’re not caught out while on a job.