BASIC UNDERSTANDING OF THE INDUSTRY Q & A:
How do I start? The process of being hired by a Field Inspection Company is very easy. First, you will need to develop a zip code Coverage Area list - which is a list of all of the cities and zip codes that you will be willing to cover for a Field Inspection Company. Second, use MyCarlsList to contact Field Inspection Companies to see if they have work in your Coverage Area. Third, send your zip code Coverage Area list to the Field Inspection Company. Most Field Inspection Companies have online applications for you to submit information about yourself and Coverage Area. Finally, get hired by the Field Inspection Company to start earning extra money doing field inspections.
Do I need a license? Most types of field inspections do not require you to have a license. Certain types of inspections, such as Appraisals, Brokers Price Opinions, and Home Inspections do require a license. An easy way to find out if you need a license for a particular field inspection is to simply ask the Field Inspection Company.
Do I need insurance? It is always a good idea to carry insurance. Most Field Inspection Companies require you to carry insurance, such as General Liability, Errors & Omissions, Automobile, and Workers Compensation.
How will I be hired? Typically, you will be hired as an independent contractor. A few Field Inspection Companies may hire you as an employee. Almost all Field Inspection Companies will require you to sign an Independent Contractor Agreement, Non-Disclosure Agreement and W-9 IRS form. Generally, it is more profitable for you to sign on as an Independent Contractor than as an employee.
How much will I be paid? The industry standard is to pay you a flat-rate fee for each inspection completed by you. Fees tend to be lower with high volume Field Inspection Companies and usually are non-negotiable. Never work for a company that states they already have an inspector in your area, but would consider you if you will complete their inspections for a lower fee. These are they type of company that would just as soon replace your services by a lower cost inspector, thus not providing you much work stability. To increase your profitability and stabilize your revenue stream, it is better to work with several high volume Field Inspection Companies in a smaller coverage area.
When will I be paid? The cycle of payment varies by Field Inspection Company. The industry norm is to pay you every 30 days for orders that were completed in the last 30 days. Most, if not all, Field Inspection Companies use an internal accounting system that automatically generates your invoices for the 30 day payment cycle. It is a good idea, however, to track all of your completed inspection orders by spreadsheet to verify proper payment.
How do I receive orders? Once you have signed a contract with a Field Inspection Company, the manner in which you will receive your field inspection orders varies by company. Typically, orders are sent to you via the Field Inspection Company's web-based application. Smaller companies tend to send you field inspection order by fax or email.
How do I know what to inspect? Almost all, if not all, Field Inspection Companies will provide you with a procedural training manual for each type of field inspection. The inspection requirements for each field inspection type vary by Field Inspection Company. Additionally, all Field Inspection Companies will provide you with a field inspection form that you must complete and submit back to them for each inspected property, along with any required photographs.
How do I submit the inspection results? Depending on the Field Inspection Company, the inspection form and photographs, if applicable, of the inspected property are either submitted through the Field Inspection Company's web-based application or by fax and email. All of the high volume Field Inspection Companies use a web-based application for submitting field inspection results.