2012 National Standards of Practice
The National Standards of Practice are a set of guidelines for home and property inspectors to follow in the performance of their inspections. They are the most widely accepted Canadian home inspection guidelines in use, and address all the home’s major systems and components. The National Standards of Practice and Code of Ethics are recognized by many related professionals as the definitive Standards for professional performance in the industry.
These National Standards of Practice are being published to inform the public on the nature and scope of visual building inspections performed by home and property inspectors who are members of the Canadian Association of Home and Property Inspectors (CAHPI).
The purpose of the National Standards of Practice is to provide guidelines for home and property inspectors regarding both the inspection itself and the drafting of the inspection report, and to define certain terms relating to the performance of home inspections to ensure consistent interpretation.
To ensure better public protection, home and property inspectors who are members of CAHPI should strive to meet these Standards and abide by the CAHPI Code of Ethics.
These Standards take into account that a visual inspection of a building does not constitute an evaluation or a verification of compliance with building codes,
Standards or regulations governing the construction industry or the health and safety industry, or Standards and regulations governing insurability.
INDEX 1. Introduction 2. Purpose and Scope 3. General Limitations and Exclusions 4. Structural Systems 5. Exterior Systems 6. Roof Systems 7. Plumbing Systems 8. Electrical Systems 9. Heating Systems 10. Fireplaces & Solid Fuel Burning Appliances 11. Air Conditioning Systems 12. Interior Systems 13. Insulation and Vapour Barriers 14. Mechanical and Natural Ventilation Systems
1.1 The Canadian Association of Home and Property Inspectors (CAHPI) is a not-for-profit association. CAHPI strives to promote excellence within the profession and continual improvement of inspection services to the public.
2. PURPOSE AND SCOPE
2.1 The purpose of these National Standards of Practice is to establish professional and uniform Standards for private, fee-paid home inspectors who are members of CAHPI. Home Inspections performed to these National Standards of Practice are intended to provide information regarding the condition of the systems and components of the building as inspected at the time of the Home Inspection. This does NOT include building code inspections.
These National Standards of Practice enable the building being inspected to be compared with a building that was constructed in accordance with the generally accepted practices at the time of construction, and which has been adequately maintained such that there is no significant loss of functionality.
It follows that the building may not be in compliance with current building codes, standards and regulations that are applicable at the time of inspection.
These National Standards of Practice apply to inspections of part or all of a building for the following building types:
• single-family dwelling, detached, semi-detached or row house
• multi unit residential building
• residential building held in divided or undivided co ownership
• residential building occupied in part for a residential occupancy and in part for a commercial occupancy, as long as the latter use does not exceed 40% of the building’s total area, excluding the basement.
2.2 The Inspector shall:
1. readily accessible, visually observable installed systems, and components of buildings listed in these National Standards of Practice.
1. on those systems and components installed on the building inspected which, in the professional opinion or judgement of the inspector, have a significant deficiency or are unsafe or are near the end of their service lives.
2. a reason why, if not self-evident, the system or component has a significant deficiency or is unsafe or is near the end of its service life.
3. the inspector’s recommendations to correct or monitor the reported deficiency.
4. on any systems and components designated for inspection in these National Standards of Practice which were present at the time of the Home Inspection but were not inspected and a reason they were not inspected.
2.3 These National Standards of Practice are not intended to limit inspectors from:
A. including other inspection services in addition to those required by these National Standards of Practice provided the inspector is appropriately qualified and willing to do so.
B. excluding systems and components from the inspection if requested by the client or as dictated by circumstances at the time of the inspection.
3. GENERAL LIMITATIONS AND EXCLUSIONS
3.1 General limitations:
A. Inspections performed in accordance with these National Standards of Practice
1. are not technically exhaustive.
2. will not identify concealed conditions or latent defects.
3.2 General exclusions:
A. The inspector is not required to perform any action or make any determination unless specifically stated in these National Standards of Practice, except as may be required by lawful authority.
B. Inspectors are NOT required to determine:
1. condition of systems or components which are not readily accessible.
2. remaining life of any system or component.
3. strength, adequacy, effectiveness, or efficiency of any system or component.
4. causes of any condition or deficiency.
5. methods, materials, or costs of corrections.
6. future conditions including, but not limited to, failure of systems and components.
7. suitability of the property for any use.
8. compliance with regulatory requirements (codes, regulations, laws, ordinances, etc.).
9. market value of the property or its marketability.
10.advisability of the purchase of the property.
11.presence of potentially hazardous plants, animals or insects including, but not limited to wood destroying organisms, diseases or organisms harmful to humans. 12.presence of any environmental hazards including, but not limited to toxins, carcinogens, noise, and contaminants in soil, water, and air.
13.effectiveness of any system installed or methods utilized to control or remove suspected hazardous substances.
14.operating costs of systems or components.
15.acoustical properties of any system or component
16.design adequacy with regards to location of the home, or the elements to which it is exposed.
C. Inspectors are NOT required to offer or perform:
1. any act or service contrary to law, statute or regulation.
2. engineering, architectural and technical services.
3. work in any trade or any professional service other than home inspection.
4. warranties or guarantees of any kind.
D. Inspectors are NOT required to operate:
1. any system or component which is shut down or otherwise inoperable.
2. any system or component which does not respond to normal operating controls.
3. shut-off valves.
To review the complete Standards of Practice, click on the attached files:
ASHI Standards of Practice.pdf