As a Navy Seabee, BUC (builder chief) Mark Bacon, 51,
spent 20 years building bridges, airports and barracks while stationed in different locations around the world. Whether helping rebuild hurricane-ravaged Honduras or constructing airports in places like Spain and Japan, Bacon was always working to make structures safe.
After retiring and establishing a permanent home in Atlanta, Bacon wanted to continue working construction. However, his years of service left him unable to perform the heavy labor necessary to build homes. Bacon found a silver lining and instead decided to put his extensive construction experience to work as a home inspector.
Bacon was one of the first veterans to graduate from a full-range home inspector education program after the Veterans Administration approved The ASHI School, a subsidiary of the American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI), to offer vocational training through Rehabilitation under Chapter 31.
“The ASHI School opened the window to continue using the skills that I gained in the Navy by teaching me how to apply my understanding of safe structures in a way that’s helpful for homeowners,” said Bacon. “The ASHI School program goes beyond piles of information. I received hands-on lessons about how systems operate.”
The 120-hour home inspection course provides veterans with more options to help create their future. Upon completion of the program, veterans earn college course credits that can be applied to their existing careers or help start a new career path. The ASHI School also provides a one-year membership to ASHI upon graduation, software to create inspection reports, and a website to start advertising their Home Inspection business.
“We are proud and excited to offer this program to the men and women who served in our armed forces,” said Jack McGraw, director of The ASHI School. “Veterans make great home inspectors – they transition from protecting our country to protecting homeowners.”
The ASHI School program emphasizes the importance of real-world experience in home inspection training. The curriculum centers on field work, offering experience about how to perform home inspections on real homes with real home inspectors.
“The training I experienced through the ASHI School was beneficial. I was able to connect the classroom material with my first-hand experience,” Bacon said.
The program combines 40 hours of pre-class study and 80 hours of classroom and field lab experience, which includes actual home inspections. Graduates of the program are eligible to receive five hours of transferrable college credit in coordination with Cincinnati State Technical Community College, which has accredited this course.
“I have never liked to do a job twice; I want to do it right the first time,” Bacon added. “I recognized a similar work ethic built into the ASHI standards, and my clients recognize this.”
The ASHI School aims to assist those interested in becoming home inspectors in starting and operating their own successful inspection career and business, as well as performing inspections in compliance with the ASHI Standards of Practice and Code of Ethics.
Veterans can use the course to bolster their existing careers or begin a new career or educational path. Classes for the 120 hour program are offered in several states, including California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Ohio, and Virginia. If you know a veteran who might be interested in becoming a home inspector, visit