New requirements for home inspectors will give consumers increased confidence when they purchase a home.
The rules take effect on Sept. 1, 2016, and will enhance home inspector licensing qualifications, strengthen home inspection reports, contracts and insurance requirements, and improve enforcement, by requiring the following:
- Home inspection contracts must describe in advance what will be covered in an inspection.
- Contractual terms that limit home inspectors’ liability will be prohibited.
- New business record-keeping requirements will be put in place for home inspectors.
- Home inspectors will be required to have valid professional and general liability insurance.
In 2013, the provincial government invited public input on an improved regulatory model for home inspectors. The resulting changes are based on public input, as well as research and consultation with home inspector associations and home inspectors, Consumer Protection BC and other stakeholders.
The Province will also undertake a comprehensive review of the qualifications required to perform home inspections and develop new, more rigorous training and examination requirements for those wishing to become home inspectors. This review will help develop a single occupational standard for all B.C. home inspectors. Results are expected to be in place in 2017.
Rich Coleman, Minister of Natural Gas Development and Minister Responsible for Housing ─
“We asked the public for input in developing new requirements for home inspectors in British Columbia. Taking that feedback into account, we have developed a new approach that will make home inspectors more accountable and ensure consumers know what to expect from a home inspector.”
Mike Morris, Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General ─
“The purchase of a family home is one of the most important investments British Columbians make. This decision is informed by a home inspection. It not only informs potential buyers about a home, but it also alerts them to what may cost them financially down the road – like needed repairs, mould or other hazards. The people of B.C. can rest assured that no matter where in this province they choose to buy, the home inspection process will be fair and transparent.”
Tayt Winnitoy, executive vice-president, Consumer Protection BC ─
“Today’s announcement by government ensures that British Columbia remains a leader in terms of licensing and regulating the home inspection industry. Consistent disclosures in home inspection contracts and inspection reports will increase protections for homebuyers and the changes provide clarity for the industry when it comes to licence qualifications. We will deliver on our expanded responsibilities using the expertise we have developed since first taking on responsibility for this sector in 2009. In doing so, we are committed to a smooth implementation for all of our stakeholders.”
Tony Gioventu, executive director, Condominium Home Owners' Association of B.C. ─
“Among other things, these changes to the home inspector licensing regulation will require important consumer information be written into the contract so that potential home buyers can be more confident, informed and protected when they make an investment in a home. ”
Helene Barton, executive director, Canadian Association of Home & Property Inspectors BC ─
“This is excellent news for the B.C. consumer and the home inspection industry. With these enhanced B.C. regulations, CAHPI(BC) will continue to provide education and support services essential to the practice of professional home inspections, which will contribute to improved consumer protection.”
John Leech, CEO, Applied Science Technologists And Technicians of BC ─
“ASTTBC welcomes the regulations being implemented for home inspector licensing. We applaud this step forward in the process and look forward to continuing to work with the government to bring about positive changes to the home inspection industry in B.C."
- In 2009, British Columbia became the first jurisdiction in Canada to require licensing of home inspectors.
- British Columbia and Alberta are the only two provinces that regulate home inspectors in Canada. Ontario is considering doing so.
- There are approximately 483 licensed home inspectors in B.C.
Looking for information about home inspections? http://www.homeinspectionrightsbc.ca