A Guide to Becoming a Licensed Home Inspector

In Washington State, great training is key to becoming a successful home inspector. With outstanding customer service, modern equipment, and excellent training, you can position yourself as a trusted expert in the industry. By staying up-to-date with the latest industry standards, you can provide your clients with the highest level of service and achieve financial success as a certified home inspector.

What is the is the median pay for home inspectors in Washington State?

As of 01/2022, indeed.com says the average salary for a home inspector is $72,116 per year in Washington State.

How Do I Become a Home Inspector in Washington State?
Download the Candidate Handbook

Be sure you download this guide from the State of Washington. This is the official roadmap to becoming a licensed home inspector.

1) Get educated & receive training.

Get certified by a Washington State licensed Home Inspector education program (like the School of Professional Home Inspection). Be sure any program you consider is listed in the Washington State Department of Licensing catalog. There are schools out there selling education in this state that do not qualify for licensure.

2) Complete your field training. 
Rainy days make for great training opportunities.

You are required to mentor with a state-licensed home inspector for 40 hours minimum and you must also complete 5 Home Inspection reports. Any licensed home inspector in Washington State can mentor licensee candidates.

We have more than 30 inspector trainers around the state to help you get your hours completed.

3) Submit your application to the Washington State Department of Licensing. 

Once the pre-licensing requirements have been met, individuals can take the state-approved home inspector exam. The exam is designed to test a candidate’s knowledge of building systems and components, as well as the standards of practice and code of ethics for home inspectors. The exam is offered several times a year at designated testing centers throughout Washington.

The exam consists of two parts on National and a State portion. When taking both portions the questions on the two will be intermixed and will not appear as separate sections. The full examination has 200 multiple-choice items, the total time allotted for the examination is 4 hours. 

4) Pass the Exam and get your license 
Upon successfully completing the examination, you may apply for your license by mail or you can submit your information electronically directly to the Department of Licensing. The cost for your first license is $720.

Questions? Need help from DOL?
Email: dolinthomeinspectors@dol.wa.gov
Call: 360.664.6487

Your SOPHI certification is recognized by the State of Oregon for its state licensing requirements also.

Have more questions? Be sure to read our FAQ, or call us, we love to talk about home inspection careers.

What are the opportunities for a licensed home inspector?

While many inspectors are self-employed, there are also possibilities to collaborate with multi-inspector firms and franchises. If considering an offer from another company, it is crucial to thoroughly review the terms. We highly advise seeking legal counsel to assess and ensure the best possible outcome.

U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development offers home inspectors opportunities to assess properties under housing programs like Section 8. They also collaborate with Certified 203(k) Consultants for property rehabilitation projects. Partnering with HUD allows inspectors to contribute to community improvement and housing accessibility.

Sewer Scopes
This service is often an easy sell to clients, as you can emphasize the importance of inspecting something they can’t see but is potentially the most expensive aspect of their property. Sewer scopes provide valuable information about the condition of the sewer line, helping homeowners and buyers make informed decisions about maintenance and potential issues.

Energy Audit
An energy audit is an inspection survey and an analysis of energy flows for energy conservation in a building. It may include a process or system to reduce the amount of energy input into the system without negatively affecting the output.
A home energy audit helps individual homeowners find out their residential consumption and energy flow. An audit is useful to determine areas of your home where there is energy loss and by identifying where power usage may be curbed to earn savings.

Structural Pest License Study Materials for Washington State


Washington State University Structural Pest Bulletins

WSU Study Materials for WSDA License Exams

  • Structural Pest Inspectors
    • Structural Pest Inspector Manual (EM013)

JJ Greive

JJ & Suzanne are both licensed, highly skilled inspectors and educators. We are the authors of our class curriculum, and truly enjoy sharing this with our students