In March 2009, British Columbia became the first province in Canada to license home inspectors. Consumer Protection BC, the licensing body for this industry, enforces the province’s home inspector laws.
BC’s Home Inspector Regulation provides added protection to homebuyers by req- uiring that home inspectors are qualified to make professional assessments and are therefore required to:
•be licensed by Consumer Protection BC,
•carry errors and omission insurance as well as general liability insurance, and
•meet training standards of one of the following associations:
–Applied Science Technologists and Technicians of British Columbia
–Canadian Association of Home & Property Inspectors (BC)
–Canadian National Association of Certified Home Inspectors
–National Home Inspector Certification Council
A list of licensed home inspectors is available on the Consumer Protection BC website (www.homeinspectionrightsbc.ca). REALTORS® should note that consumers can ask to see home inspectors' wallet-sized licenses issued by Consumer Protection BC before signing contracts for home inspections.
Consumer Protection BC would like to remind REALTORS® that they should not request information about the contents of a home inspection report, as it is against the law for home inspectors to disclose the contents, except: •with permission from the consumer,
•as required by law, or
•if, in the opinion of the home inspector, the property poses a serious health or safety risk.
REALTORS® should also not make a referral to a home inspector if there is a conflict of interest in relation to a home inspection that results in a material gain for the home inspector. Penalties for a violation of the regulation may include a licence refusal, suspension or can- cellation, or conditions being imposed on a home inspector’s licence. Consumer Protection BC may also impose an administrative penalty of up to $5,000.
To find out more information about BC’s Home Inspector Regulation or ensure a home inspector is licensed by Consumer Protection BC, visit www.homeinspectionrightsbc.ca.