Hiring a home inspector? Check for current license

A home inspection is your assurance that the house you are ready to buy is in sound condition.

So please be advised: before you hire an inspector, make sure they are licensed as a contractor.

There is reason for caution. In California, anyone can say they are a home inspector—no license or training is required. This is why the person you hire should be trained and licensed as a contractor to identify problems, large or small, wherever they might be found. Because if they miss something, it could cost you.

What is a home inspector going to inspect?

A licensed contractor who inspects the home with give you a thorough, physical examination of all mechanical, electrical, and plumbing systems, plus the structural components of the dwelling—roof, foundation, insultation, electrical and plumbing. Any defects must be clearly identified in a report, prepared for a fee, of the conditions found by the contractor.  This report is then typically given to potential buyers.

What if the home inspector misses something?

A defect can be anything from a leaky window to a wobbly foundation, improper drainage and so much more. Think about moving into a home only to have a fire caused by faulty wiring that went undetected in the inspection. Or to uncover a pest infestation that an untrained inspector overlooked. Whatever the scale of the problem, if you have evidence that the seller knew or should have known about an undisclosed defect, you may have to take legal action for the seller’s failure to provide notice of material nondisclosures. If you think something was missed that should have been noted and then disclosed in the inspector’s report, contact an attorney.

Is there any oversight on home inspections?

The law in California prohibits unethical home inspection practices. It is an unfair business practice for a home inspector to have any financial interests in the outcome of an inspection. And buyer beware if the seller pays for the home inspection—this is a possible red flag that the seller might be aware of defects on the property. As the potential buyer of a home, you might want to hire your own contractor to inspect.

Bottom line? Know that it will always be in your best interest to check the credentials of the person you entrust with inspecting your next home.

Know Your Rights. Protect Yourself.

Ready for Aggressive Legal Help?

Talk with an experienced lawyer in an obligation-free telephone consultation. We will personally review your challenging, out-of-the-ordinary case for free whereas other firms charge for a consultation. 

Contact Form

"*" indicates required fields

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Mary Catherine Wiederhold

Real Estate Attorney
1458 Sutter Street
San Francisco, CA 94109

Mary Catherine Wiederhold
Rated by Super Lawyersloading ...
Courtney Brown
Rated by Super Lawyersloading ...

Our offices are conveniently accessible to public transportation.

The use of the Internet or this website for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through these media.