At the time of this writing, Virginia is in the process of instituting a license requirement for home inspectors. Starting on July 1, 2017, all home inspections will require a license. And there will be a specialty designation for newly constructed homes.
Up to the July date, certification by the Board For Asbestos, Lead, and Home Inspectors is not required. And neither is certification by any national association or other organization.
Starting in July, the opposite is true in that all home inspectors will have to get a license. But there is a way to instantly get a license on that date by getting voluntary certification before that date. Otherwise, you will have to qualify under the licensing requirements set up by that time.
At the time of this post, the new license rules were still being formulated. But education and probably a licensing exam will be required.
Also starting in July is the New Residential Structure specialty designation. To get an NRS, you must get a license plus obtain additional training in the Virginia Uniform Statewide Building Code’s International Residential Code.
To summarize, a regular license will only be valid for homes that have already been lived in. A license plus the NRS specialty designation will permit home inspectors to inspect both new and older residences.
If you are reading this before July 1, 2017, then you can work to obtain certification before that date so that you will be issued a license at that time. To do this, you need to complete a certified home inspector training course first. The Board does not individually approve any courses. Before signing up for a course, make sure it teaches the areas tested in the National Home Inspector Examination. These are accepted by the Board. ASHI is one that is acceptable. Confirm with any other training providers by asking if their students have successfully been certified in Virginia after completing the course.
The National Home Inspector Examination is the primary accepted test. If you passed an ASHI test in 2000 or earlier, that will be accepted. If you previously passed the CRI exam, that is also accepted.
You also must complete some home inspections to become certified. These rules are as follows:
1. course with 35 hours requires 100 inspections or 50 inspections directly supervised by a certified home inspector; or
2. course with 70 hours requires 50 inspections or 25 inspections directly supervised by a certified home inspector.
In all cases, no more than 50 percent of the hours may be online or through the mail. The other must consist of some kind of classroom or other live training. If you have 10 years of experience and at least 250 home inspections, you generally qualify for certification with attending the required home inspection courses.
Use the Forms and Applications tab on the following page to find the Virginia home inspector certification application form and instructions.