The Inspector Advisory Committee met virtually on April 12. During the meeting, Deputy Executive Director, Tony Slagle provided a legislative update. He informed us that there are two inspector-related bills that are up for consideration by the state legislature. The first, HB 2376 relates to eliminating the Inspector Recovery Fund. With the requirement for inspectors to carry insurance, this fund is underutilized. If the fund is eliminated, the current funds will be dispersed out in a few ways. Some of the funds will stay in reserve for potential claims that may come up that are still within the statute of limitations, some will go to the state’s general revenue fund, and some may be refunded back to currently licensed inspectors.
The second bill, HB 2378, relates to the removal of the Real Estate Inspector license type. This would help further accomplish streamlining the inspector application process as recommended by the Sunset Commission in TREC last Sunset review . The Professional and Apprentice license types would still be in use. Licensed Real Estate Inspectors would not need to upgrade if they did not wish to do so and can renew as the same license type. However, no new applications for this license type would be considered or accepted.
The Education Subcommittee and a working group of subject matter experts have completed the new Legal and SOP update course for mandatory continuing education. This course, pending approval by the TREC Commissioners in May, will go into effect in September, and it will be valid for two years. Since this course was written internally this time around there was a lot of work that went into this course from staff, committee members, and other inspector volunteers. Their efforts on this are greatly appreciated.
The big topics at the April Committee meeting were the proposed changes to the SOPs and the report form. The Standards of Practice Subcommittee has been working on this SOP revision for over two years now. They have gone above and beyond to make changes to the SOPs that have been needed for some time and others that came from input from staff and inspectors across the state. Again, the amount of time and effort put forth by this subcommittee, past subcommittee members, and other volunteers are greatly appreciated. These proposed revisions have had a lot of thought and discussion go into them. They will be proposed at the May Commission meeting. The earliest that these SOP changes would be approved would be at the August Commissioner’s meeting. Please take a moment to go through the proposed changes after the May meeting and submit any feedback that you might have using the new online public comment tool or submit comments to General Counsel to firstname.lastname@example.org.
At the last meeting, it was determined that the street address for inspectors would no longer be listed on the TREC website when pulling up an inspector’s license. There was some confusion on whether licensees would have to request this formally or not. That is not the case. The staff has removed the street address from all inspectors’ information on the TREC website. The city, state, and zip code will still be listed to ensure that consumers looking for a license holder within a certain geographical area will still be able to search based on that criteria.
We are coming to the end of this pandemic. I want to thank all of you for your continued professionalism during this unusual time. Thank you to our volunteer committee members for their hard work at this meeting.
I look forward to seeing them and many of you in person again soon.