Home inspector certification programs are training courses designed to teach individuals how to become home inspectors or to assist a home inspector with their continuing education. These courses typically teach the basics of home inspections, including how to properly inspect a home and what to look for while doing an inspection.
These programs also train home inspectors on how to create an inspection report using software specifically designed for home inspectors. Once completed, home inspectors can take additional courses to keep their license current (if a license is required in their state), or to offer additional specialty inspections, such as radon and mold testing, septic system and pool inspections, and inspections for new construction.
We reviewed 12 home inspector certification programs based on cost, curriculum, and completion time before making our top choices.
Best Home Inspector Certification Programs
- Best Overall: American Home Inspectors Training
- Best Value/Low-Cost: International Association of Certified Home Inspectors
- Best for Quick Completion: Professional Home Inspection Institute
- Best for Continuing Education: McKissock Learning
- Best for In-Person Training: ATI Training
Best Overall : American Home Inspectors Training
Why We Chose It: American Home Inspectors Training (AHIT) provides both online courses and in-field training to help prepare you to become a home inspector. You also get unlimited support from instructors for questions about licensing exam prep, courses, and business questions.
Access to instructors for life
Access to courses even after you pass your exams
Exam books to help you study and set up your business model
Unlimited customer support
InspectIT software is expensive and there are monthly fees
Paying for all the different courses can get expensive
AHIT was founded in 1993 and it is part of the Mbition company, a leader in real estate training for home inspectors, real estate agents, and home appraisers. It offers both online and in-person courses designed to meet state regulations for certification and licensing. AHIT is the largest home inspection training company in North America with over 50,000 plus alumni.
The company provides everything you need to get started as a home inspector, from the course materials to developing a model for your business, as well as the home inspection software you will need for writing your reports. AHIT prices each of its courses individually and prices vary by state. The cost can run from about $205 through $999 for a single course. The number of courses you will need to complete the program varies by the requirements of each state, and since the course is self-paced, the time it takes to complete the program is up to you.
Once you have completed your certification, AHIT provides InspectIT software to help create reports. This software is available online and in the cloud, allowing you to sync information from phone to notebook, or onto your laptop.
Best Value/Low-Cost : International Association of Certified Home Inspectors
Why We Chose It: International Association of Certified Home Inspectors (InterNACHI) is not only low cost, but it lets you start your training for free to see if the program is right for you.
Start your training for free
Live classroom training at the InterNachi House of Horrors
A variety of apps and tools to help grow your business
Program certification may not meet every state's licensing requirements
Not all classes are free even with membership
InterNACHI was founded in 1994 and has become an industry leader in education and training. Its online exams and quizzes have been taken over 3 million times and it also offers courses for licensed real estate professionals.
InterNachi offers a lot to members, including learning to become a home inspector to developing logos and marketing once you start your inspection business. They also offer continuing education through webinars and videos along with live training at their House of Horrors in Colorado and Florida.
Unlike most home inspection certification programs, InterNACHI charges a $49 per month non-member fee, which allows you to access over 1,000 courses for free, or you can pay $499 per year for membership and receive the courses for free, plus a lot of tools to help grow your business.
It is important to note, however, that while most courses are free, there are still courses you will have to pay to access.
Although their certification is accredited, it is not accepted for state licensing in every state. Before signing up for a membership, check to see if their program meets the requirements for your location.
Best for Quick Completion : Professional Home Inspection Institute
Why We Chose It: Professional Home Inspection Institute (PHII) provides a complete home inspection course that you can complete at your own pace. Testimonials from previous students state you can complete your training in a little over three weeks.
Free home inspection report software for unlimited devices
Free business website with online credit card processing for starting your business
Provides online and live training
Payment for initial certification is paid as one lump sum instead of pay-as-you-go
Training not approved in every state
PHII was founded in 1999 and is part of the Be Online Inc. network of education and compliance solutions. It provides home inspector training in the U.S. and Canada via interactive online training, field labs, and classroom training.
Students receive a prep package that includes the Online Home Inspector Course with optional back-up CD, inspection documents, certificate, student manual, course DVDs (online), and toll-free student support. The company also provides free bonus items such as a business website, an advanced home inspector course, and more.
You can also choose add-on courses including wind mitigation, manufactured homes, marketing basics, mold basics, and advanced home inspection. Additionally, the company offers an energy auditor training program,
The PHII online course typically costs $595; the six-day classroom training at the facility in Madison, South Dakota, costs $1995; and the 12-day training in New York or 10-day training in Arkansas and West Virginia cost $2,995. However, prices vary from state to state, so make sure you check the website for accurate pricing along with any potential discounts.
The company stresses that the course is self-paced. You can choose to complete in just a few weeks or work on the course as long as you need and take several months or a year.
Best for Continuing Education : McKissock Learning
Why We Chose It: McKissock Learning is one of the most well-known learning centers in the real estate industry. They offer affordable continuing education courses for home inspectors that you can purchase either individually or as part of a package.
You can take one continuing education class at a time
Individual classes are extremely affordable
Pre-licensing courses not available
Continuing education courses are not available in all states
Founded in 1990, McKissock Learning is part of the Colibri Group. They provide education and training for a variety of industries, including real estate, property appraisal, engineering, nursing, mental health, massage therapy, and cosmetology. While McKissock Learning does provide comprehensive training for real estate agents and appraisers, they only provide continuing education for home inspectors.
McKissock Learning’s continuing education classes are only available in 22 states. Prices vary from state to state, depending on licensing requirements. Packages start from around $129 for about 14 hours and increase in price as the number of continuing education hours increases.
You can also choose to just take an hour or two at a time for as little as $15.97 to $19.97. The subject matter of the available courses you can take varies depending on the state you are in. As an example, home inspectors in Florida can take two hours of Florida Hurricane Mitigation as part of their continuing education, but this course is not offered in Alaska.
Best for In-Person Training : ATI Training
Why We Chose It: ATI Training offers live, in-person training across the country in different states and regions. Instead of just a few classes a year, the company has many different dates available and training lasts from around seven to nine days.
In-person training available in different areas of the country
Free Inspector Guide
Prices for in-person training not available on website
Not available in all states
ATI Home Inspector Training is one of the few home inspection companies that offer extensive in-person training in multiple states. Although the prices for live training are not available on the website, ATI Home Inspector Training does list the price for their online courses as $695. The length of the in-person training varies from state to state with most classes taking either seven or nine days.
During training, students have both interactive and classroom training. You will also participate in five practice home inspections so that you know exactly what you are looking for in the field. The company offers discounts on home inspector training for EMT and firefighters, police officers, and the military. You can also use programs such as the GI Bill and VR&E (Veteran’s Readiness and Employment) to help pay for tuition and housing while attending the in-person training.
The company does not disclose much information on its website about their training, so you’ll need to contact them or submit a request for more detail on courses that fit your specific needs.
All home inspector certification programs on our list have a good reputation in the industry and have been around a long time. While they all offer the same online courses as required for each state, we found that it’s the extras they offer during the training or after your initial training that makes each certification program stand out from the other.
Overall, we recommend American Home Inspectors Training for its comprehensive course material, business model for its inspectors, and home inspection software.
|Home Inspector Certification Program||Category||Why We Picked It||Cost|
|American Home Inspectors Training||Best Overall||Comprehensive training program, support both during and after training, software program||Varies by state, but generally $205 to $999|
|International Association of Certified Home Inspectors||Best Value/Low-Cost||Low membership fee with lots of courses offered for free||Courses are free, but fee of $49 per month for non-members or $499 per year for membership|
|Professional Home Inspection Institute||Best for Quick Completion||Self-paced training and free software program||$595 for online courses. In-person training varies by state|
|McKissock Learning||Best for Continuing Education||Low-cost continuing education by package or individual course||Varies by state. Packages start around $129, and individual courses start as low as $15.97|
|ATI Training||Best for In-Person||In-person training and available financing||Online course $695. In-person training price not available on the website|
Frequently Asked Questions
What Is a Home Inspector Certification Program?
A home inspector certification program is a learning program completed online or in person designed to teach you the ins and outs of becoming a home inspector. When you have completed your course of study, schools typically present you with a certificate stating that you have completed your training. In states where a license is required to become a home inspector, certification is usually the first step.
How Long Does It Take to Complete a Home Inspector Certification Program?
It can take as much as three months or longer, or you could finish your training in a matter of a few weeks. The length of time it takes to receive your certificate depends on the individual and the number of courses you need to take to receive certification in your state.
How Much Does a Home Inspector Certification Program Cost?
The cost to receive certification to become a home inspector varies from company to company and state to state. Since each state has its own requirements, the number of courses you will need to take varies. Depending on what state you live in and the requirements you need, courses could cost as little as $129 for an online course to as much as $3,000 for an in-person course.
What Type of Certification or License Do I Need to Work as a Home Inspector?
The type of certification or license you need to work as a home inspector varies from state to state. For example, in the State of Georgia, you are not required to have a license or certification to operate as a home inspector. Without some kind of certification, however, you will most likely have trouble getting clients since most real estate agents, homebuyers, and home sellers won’t want to hire someone who has no formal training or certification.
We evaluated more than a dozen options before selecting our choices for the best home inspector certification programs. During our evaluation, we looked at such things as what type of training each company offers, how much it costs, and what you get for the price. In addition, we looked at what type of support you receive once the course is over and what the company provides to help you launch your business.
All of the courses we chose provide affordable, comprehensive training that can be completed in a reasonable amount of time.