AHIT Graduate and Home Inspector Michael Roberson

AHIT Alumni Stories: Home Inspector Michael Roberson

By Published On: April 15th, 2024Categories: Home Inspection Career Guide0 Comments

Home inspector, former general contractor, and family man Michael Roberson has worked in and around homes for the length of his career. When COVID found him reassessing his journey and looking to slow down a bit, a door cracked open into home inspection. Here’s Michael’s story.

From Handywork & Contracting to Home Inspection

Michael’s journey has been homegrown, literally. The married father of three has enjoyed working in and around homes for years. He’s been a handyman, worked in construction, and owned a successful cleaning and contracting business.

“I knew I couldn’t be a contractor and work construction forever,” Michael said. “At some point, I needed to slow down.”

The opportunity to slow down naturally revealed itself during COVID.

“That time made me reassess everything, and I decided there was no better time to complete training and start something new than during lockdown,” Michael said. “I wanted to come out of COVID with a new career that would really better my and my family’s lives.”

Michael researched home inspection, found AHIT, and enrolled in training.

Learning Home Inspection & How to Build His Business

Michael enrolled in a two-week live classroom training and worked with three AHIT instructors, Chris Kjeldsen, Glen Thompson, and Sean Reed.

“I was constantly raising my hand and asking them questions, and both Chris and Glen were the most patient instructors,” Michael said. “You can tell they have a genuine interest in each individual and want the best for you. And they are ALWAYS dropping gems of knowledge.”

Those gems weren’t just about how to inspect a home either.

Along with learning the home inspection process, how to write inspection reports, and how to communicate with clients, Michael learned golden tips for building his business. Lessons on how to find clients, create referral sources, and how to market inspection services were key aspects of AHIT training. They paid off.

After passing the National Home Inspector Exam (NHIE) and earning his Washington home inspector license, Michael had an inspection job lined up the next week.

AHIT Graduate and Home Inspector Michael Roberson and his familyGrowing His Home Inspection Business

“Working as a home inspector is all about finding the client, especially when you’re operating your own business,” Michael said. “You want to find your client, keep your client, and get referrals from your client.”

As Michael enters his third year of inspection with his company Prime Property Inspections, his business is now exclusively referral based.

His best tip for generating client leads?

“Go to open houses, talk with the real estate agents there, and form relationships” he said. “They can become your referral sources. This is what I did my very first weekend after getting licensed, and it led to my first inspection job.”

Now, with more than 400 inspections completed, Michael has his business down to a science. He gets an early start, sometimes handling up to three inspections per day, sends out his inspection reports in the evenings, and schedules work around family time with his wife, Leia, and their three young children.

Passion For Great Client Service

Michael loves helping put his clients at ease during the sometimes-stressful process of a home inspection.

“Before every inspection, I tell my clients that I’m probably going to find something,” Michael explained. “But that 99% of what I find will have an easy solution.”

This approach helps calm his worried clients, many of whom are eager, first-time homebuyers.

Michael also likes to get clients involved during the home inspection, often giving them their own flashlights and encouraging them to “inspect” themselves as he works his way around a home.

“I really try and make it a fun, low-stress process,” Michael added.

Advice For Trainees & New Home Inspectors

Entering his era as a seasoned home inspector, Michael has a few gems of his own to share as advice for new trainees and new inspectors.

“Listen to your instructors and don’t be afraid to ask questions,” Michael said. “Whether it’s online or live training, ask as many questions as possible. It’s your opportunity to learn.”

He also recommends using a drone to help make inspecting hard-to-reach areas easier.

He learned this the hard way, Michael told us, laughing.

On his first home inspection, he was inspecting a three-story, new construction home in Seattle in pouring rain.

“I had my 30-foot ladder ready to go to get up on the roof,” he said. “And the house was over 30 feet.”

Michael ultimately found a way to inspect the roof successfully using a telescopic pole camera – but it required a lot of creative juggling, especially in the rain.

“After that, I bought a drone,” he said, chuckling.

Long-Lasting Mentorship

Michael also keeps in touch with his AHIT instructors, who have now become mentors.

“Your relationship with your instructor doesn’t have to end when the class ends,” he said.

He’s had AHIT Instructor Chris over for dinner with the family and they text often.

“When you start training, you don’t have to do it all alone,” Michael said. “There are people who have done this before you. It’s your chance to learn from them and continue learning together. That’s the beauty of training.”

Learn From Home Inspection Experts With AHIT

When you’re training to become a home inspector, who you learn from makes all the difference. Learn from seasoned home inspectors – who are also expert instructors – with AHIT! Learn your state’s licensing requirements and get started with your training today.

About the Author: Ashley Roe

Ashley Roe is a Content Specialist with AHIT and The CE Shop. She writes regularly about home inspection and appraisal. With a reporter's eye and a passion for learning, Ashley stays current on what's happening within each industry. Her goal is to create engaging, relevant, and useful content that both informs and inspires readers.

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