These are the non-profit governing bodies for the home inspection industry and do a few things:
- Establishes a code of ethics for its members to follow
- Creates the education requirements a home inspector must receive each year to maintain their membership
- Determines which things are – and are not – required to be tested, inspected, and operated during a home inspection
So just like building codes give a home builder a set of minimum standards to build a house, InterNACHI™ (International Association of Certified Home Inspectors) and ASHI® (American Society of Home Inspectors) give a home inspector minimum standards to operate their inspection business.
And since both organizations essentially perform the same function, a home inspector doesn’t have to belong to both (some states don’t even require a home inspector to join either one).
Is there a difference?
For you as a customer, no. Not really.
ASHI® was founded in 1976 and InterNACHI™ was founded in 1990.
Over the years, in addition to creating standards and practices, ASHI® has evolved into an organization that works toward improving the entire home inspection industry.
They do this through a long-time legislative effort which is why it is sometimes better known to the general public and preferred by certain loan programs (though this trend is changing).
InterNACHI™’s focus is on the growth and development of the individual home inspector.
They do this by delivering innovative and comprehensive training and support for all home inspectors, agents, and home buyers.
That said, the two organizations sometimes butt heads.
But, for you as a homebuyer, they both serve the same purpose.
So what do ASHI® and InterNACHI™ mean to you as a home buyer?
They give you a certain level of assurance knowing its members pledge to maintain a certain level of professionalism and standards.
But here’s what InterNACHI™ and ASHI® don’t do:
- They aren’t an insurance company to protect you if a home inspector misses something.
- They aren’t a group that could punish a home inspector or kick them out of the profession for acting unethically or unprofessionally (there are exceptions that involve revoking their license, but this is not common).
In situations like that, you’ll want to contact the home inspector directly and work on a fair and reasonable solution.