Division of Real Estate Issues Home Inspector Program Update

Blog, Home Inspection

Home inspector examining the exterior of a building.

The Division of Real Estate has issued an update on the implementation of the new Ohio Home Inspector Program, which was signed in to law on January 4, 2019. The law mandates licensure of any provider of home inspection services. The law becomes effective on April 5, 2019, but is not operational until the Governor makes his final appointment to the Ohio Home Inspector Board. An appointment must be made on or before July 4, 2019, so the program could become operational anytime up to and including July 4, 2019. Beginning November 1, 2019, any person providing home inspection services must be actively licensed through the Division.

The Ohio Home Inspector Board will be administratively served by the Division and will regulate the home inspector program. The Board will be comprised of five members that are licensed home inspectors and two members that are consumer advocates. The Board will oversee the issuance of home inspector licenses and enforcement of disciplinary cases for violation of home inspection laws. Some requirements for home inspectors are already set forth in statute and the Board will adopt other requirements rules. For example, home inspectors will have to have a written contract with clients, provide a written report of the inspection results and retain all records for a period of 5 years. For real estate licensees, when responding to a client’s referral request, the new law requires the provision of at least 3 names of licensed home inspectors to the client.

For those currently providing home inspection services, the law allows 120 days, from the date the program becomes operational, for applicants to obtain a grandfathered license.

The requirements for the grandfathered license include:

  1. Proof of comprehensive or commercial general liability insurance
  2. Acknowledgment that the applicant is subject to laws regarding Ohio home inspections and any subsequently adopted Board rules
  3. Completion of a criminal background check
  4. Certification under oath of completion of 3 of the following 8 requirements
  • Completed at least 200 home inspections for compensation from clients
  • Successfully passed a national home inspector examination within two (2) years from the date an application is submitted to the Division
  • Actively operated a home inspection business in Ohio for three (3) years
  • Was employed as a home inspector with a home inspector business for 36 consecutive months
  • Successfully completed 80 hours of home inspector education
  • Currently maintains an active home inspector license in a jurisdiction where the requirements to obtain that license are substantially similar to Ohio’s home inspector license requirements;
  • Prepared at least five (5) home inspection reports that have been verified as being compliant with standards adopted by a national home inspector organization
  • Completed at least one (1) peer review session conducted by a national home inspector organization within one (1) year prior to April 5, 2019

The Division has created a link to sign up for the latest news updates regarding the Home Inspector Program. Additional information can be found at the Division of Real Estate’s website.

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