Starting Out And Setting Up A Business
Set up a corporation in the State that you will be doing business in. This isn't a big expense. Consult an attorney in your area to assist you. You can use your home as an office. This is the most common way to start out. There's very little overhead and you don't have to pay rent and utilities for office space. Set up a separate phone line and create a professional web site. You don't have to hire a secretary if you can't afford one. Just use an answering machine. You set your own hours and you can work part-time or full-time, whichever you prefer.
Have business cards, stationery and brochures made up at a local printer and drop them off and introduce yourself at the local real estate offices, law offices, banks, appraisal offices and any businesses involved in real estate. I did this for months in my beginning stages. Banks are a potential source for home inspections. They need to order inspections for some of their mortgage loans. If you get on a bank's approved inspector list you should have more than enough business to keep you busy and keep your own savings account growing.
Relocation companies are a great source of inspections. I had a friend who was doing over a million dollars a year in business with relocation companies for inspections and appraisals. Get the relocation directories for the phone numbers and addresses to contact them. When a company relocates one of their employees, they generally have two appraisals and two home inspections done. The company hires one appraiser and inspector, and the employee of the company hires the other appraiser and home inspector. The purpose of this is that they get two different opinions as to the current market value and condition of the employee's house. They then agree to a sales price and the company will reimburse their employee by buying the house from them. This enables the employee to move to the new location and buy a home. Sometimes when the first two inspectors are very different in estimating the condition, they hire a third inspector to settle the matter!
Some insurance companies hire inspectors before they write certain homeowner's policies. Contact some of the insurance agents in your area and see if they need inspectors. Local construction companies and the city building department may need to hire home inspectors. I did many home inspections for a construction company in my area. This construction company was hired by the city to install sewer lines in areas where the houses all have septic systems. I was paid to go out and inspect all the houses for any structural problems before the construction company started blasting to install the sewer lines.
Get email lists of real estate offices, law offices, relocation companies, etc. to email them a link to your web site. Local billboards and other ads can be inexpensive for the exposure you get.
Work with another inspection company. I worked with two local companies and one national outfit that did relocation inspections initially while I was learning the business and building up contacts. There are many benefits to doing this. You will be earning money while building up business contacts during your training. You get to learn the basics of the business and you don't have the liability and overhead costs.