ASHI Legislation on HUD Home Inspection Counseling Reaches the President
Status of the legislation.
The Senate has sent the financial overhaul bill to President
Obama’s desk. In addition to many other provisions, the bill includes a section
that will add home inspection to the HUD housing counseling program in a big
HUD will be enlisted to do the following:
Actively advise homebuyers across the country to
obtain home inspections as a key element of buying a house
Tell buyers that obtaining a home inspection is
a decision they need to make, and should make
Tell buyers what professional characteristics to
look for in a home inspector, and where and how to find one
Ensure that homebuyers reached by the HUD
counseling programs consider obtaining a home inspection as early as possible
in the process -- when home inspections
have the greatest utility to homebuyers.
Develop new documents and training materials
both for training HUD counselors and for distribution to the buyers they
Make all of these messages available to all
homebuyers regardless of whether they finance using government-backed programs
or private sector lending.
This national de facto marketing effort will
occur at no cost to ASHI members, and will be conducted under the authority,
funding and staffing resources of HUD.
With completion of this legislative phase of the project,
ASHI will shift to the next phase – administrative implementation. We have set
the stage for ASHI to meet with the key HUD staff, who will implement the new
home inspection counseling provisions. We fully anticipate that ASHI will have
important input into the implementation phase. In fact, ASHI has already helped
HUD draft some of the key documents that will be used by HUD staff – the “For
Your Protection, Get a Home Inspection” document, as well as the “Ten Questions
to Ask Your Home Inspector” document, that prompts homebuyers to consider the
quality, professionalism, ethics, experience issues that strongly favor ASHI
Further, we note that there may be training opportunities in
which the ASHI office might participate as a grantee. We will discuss possible
funding opportunities for ASHI to engage in such a role and perhaps generate a
new revenue opportunity.
Purpose of the legislation
Previous research conducted by GAO (also requested by ASHI)
demonstrated conclusively that there are numerous reasons why homebuyers do not
obtain home inspections, and many of those reasons are unrelated to cost. Many of those reasons relate to con