What Makes You So Special?

By Nick Gromicko, CMI®, Ben Gromicko, Kate Tarasenko and Jessica Langer
What distinguishes you from your competition?
For InterNACHI’s Marketing Team (at nachi.org/marketing) to create the most effective marketing materials for you, we’d like you to take some time to think carefully about how your business differs from your competitors’.
Read all of the following questions. It’s possible that you’ve come to take for granted even the most basic tools and services in your arsenal, but they may be the very things that your competitors don’t offer. So, think in as much detail as possible about the different things you believe distinguish you from your competition, including tools, inspection services, report features, customer service conveniences, ancillary services, etc.
For example, do you have a work background and/or formal education or training in a field related to home inspections, such as construction, engineering, code compliance, etc.? Do you have multiple certifications and/or licenses? Do you provide thermal imaging as part of your standard home inspection? Do you carry special tools and equipment, such as an extra-tall ladder or a Spectoscope for inspecting roofs? Do you perform inspections on green/alternative housing? Does your company employ more than one inspector?  Do you use certain technology while performing your inspections, such as an iPad? Try to think outside the box!

  • After you become a certified member by successfully completing InterNACHI's core Continuing Education curriculum, take advantage of the Certified Professional Inspector (CPI)® designation.  Use it in all of your marketing, and download the web seal.  It's free to members:  https://www.nachi.org/logos.htm#cpi 
  • Thermal imaging is a great tool to use for inspections and an impressive skill to market to your prospects.  If you're looking for free training, become Infrared Certified® at https://www.nachi.org/ir.htm 

How many years have you been in business as a home inspector? 
What licenses and certifications have you attained?

What is your business philosophy? For example, do you pride yourself in running a green business (low carbon footprint, energy offsets, etc.)? Do you employ people from your community? Do you consider yourself First-Time Home Buyer-Friendly? Again, think of things that your competitors cannot claim, and then download the relevant logos and web seals to add to your website and other marketing.
  • Become IAC2-Certified for Mold and Radon Inspections for free.  Visit http://iac2.org/ to learn how.

List your individual inspection services for which you may charge extra, and write a brief description for your clients if the service is not self-explanatory. These inspections may include mold, radon, deck, garage, commercial property, pool & spa, WDO/pests, thermal imaging, child safety, aging-in-place, green building/features, private wells, septic systems, outbuildings, historic homes, mobile/manufactured homes, new-home construction and/or draw-down inspections, multi-unit housing, rural properties, Move-In Certified™ Seller Inspections, etc.
  • Read about why you should offer Move-In Certified™ Seller Inspections at http://www.moveincertified.com/  We offer many free items to help you market this service to home sellers.
List your customer service conveniences. For example, do you have staff that answers phones during regular business hours while you’re out on inspections? Do you offer evening and/or weekend appointments?  Do you take payments by credit card? Do you encourage clients to attend your inspections so that you can answer their questions? Do you provide a free copy of Now That You’ve Had a Home Inspection home maintenance book with your report? It's also available in Spanish.  Are you pet-friendly? Do you include a $10,000 Honor Guarantee™?
  • Sound smart on the phone by using SoundSmart for incoming customer calls.  Keep track of important details for the appointment, and maximize your time on the phone.  Learn more about this free tool at https://www.nachi.org/soundsmartintro.htm 
  • Get InterNACHI's Now That You’ve Had a Home Inspection, the ultimate home maintenance book for clients, at https://www.nachi.org/now.htm  It's available in Spanish, too!



  • Provide your clients added security with our $10,000 Honor Guarantee™.  Read more about it at nachi.org/honor  It's free for use by members.
List the unique and special aspects of your inspection reports and/or features of your report delivery. For example, do you deliver on-site or same-day reports? Do you offer electronic reports that can be emailed or downloaded from your website?  Do your reports include narratives in addition to checklists? Do your reports include digital photos and/or thermal images for comparison? Do you provide online videos or DVDs of your inspections?

  • Offering convenient online reports is a great way to keep your business green and your report turnaround time fast.  Market these desirable features of your services when you use FetchReport.  Upload your reports for your clients to download at https://www.nachi.org/fetchreportfriendlyseal.htm
List the other specialties and features of your business not stated previously that make you unique or unusual compared to other inspectors in your service area. For example, do you have a wraparound on your truck that readily identifies you? Do you offer 11th-Month Builder's Warranty Inspections on new builds? Do you inspect built-in and/or portable appliances (if not required by your state)? Do you offer referrals to green contractors who can perform energy upgrades? Do you offer consultations for EEMs or HUD/203Ks? If you're a Florida inspector, do you perform Wind Mitigation or 4-Point Inspections? Do you offer fast turnaround of lab testing results for mold sampling? Do you inspect for special types of events, such as earthquake preparedness or post-disaster inspections (floods, storms, etc.)? Do you offer Home Energy Reports™, Home Energy Inspections, Green Building Inspections, or Log Home Inspections?
List some of the personal details relevant to your business that you think may be of benefit for your marketing.  For example, are you a veteran? Have you been a resident of your community for many years? Do you give back to your community by volunteering for or donating to local nonprofits, sports teams, youth organizations, etc.?  (This may also be considered part of your business philosophy.)

Do you have or use atagline, your own or one of InterNACHI’s?

What are your most profitable or popular services?  
Do you offer any specific services that you’re especially interested in aggressively promoting?
Are you (or anyone on your staff) fluent in any language(s) besides English?  Did you know that many of InterNACHI’s inspection-related articles at https://www.nachi.org/articles.htm are also in Spanish and French? And InterNACHI’s home maintenance book, Now That You’ve Had a Home Inspection, is available in English and Spanish at https://www.nachi.org/now.htm.

The content of this article comes from InterNACHI's free online "Home Inspection Business Course" that is open to everyone.
This course is free, online, and open to everyone.