My husband, Micah, and I started our home inspection business this summer. If you had asked me prior to starting this process how hard I thought it was going to be, I would have probably laughed politely and shrugged off the question. I mean, how hard CAN IT BE? I had read a few books (and by “reading”, I mean skimming through and stopping occasionally on headlines that caught my attention), watched some inspirational documentaries, and HELLO! I do have a Bachelors degree in Business Administration! That means I’m qualified, right?
We are lucky in that home inspection, as a business, has relatively low overhead – no need for a storefront or office, and for now at least, one employee…Micah. We began by filing our legal paperwork with the state in early August, and we were so elated! The beginning of our next chapter! The door to our future opening up to greet us! Here we go!
And then we waited.
We realized very quickly that we could not take any other steps until the state approved our business filing and gave us the green light. We needed to get started with a few business purchases, but we couldn’t move ahead until we had a business account. We couldn’t open a business account until we had our tax ID, and we wouldn’t have a tax ID until the state gave us the stamp of approval. It was maddening.
After changing the business name several times (did you know that in Texas, if your business name is too similar to another in the state – even if the other business is in a completely different industry and geographical area – you will be asked to choose another name), and multiple phone calls back and forth with the Secretary of State’s office, we received our paperwork announcing that we were officially “SafeShield Inspections, LLC”. That was another exciting day.
Things really started to move for us in late September, and we have been full steam ahead ever since – website, insurance, reporting software, business management software, uniforms, marketing/promo materials, and the list goes on. On October 23, 2017, after triple-checking systems and reports and communications, we were finally, officially, happily, open for business!
Now comes the truly difficult part of starting a business, in particular, a home inspection business. The majority of clients looking to schedule a home inspection are home buyers referred by their Realtor or agent. And this referral comes in the form of an approved list of inspectors. Micah is a fantastic inspector, and we can yell it from our rooftop all day long but it won’t make a difference! How do you get on that list? Who do you call? Where do we start? Once again, we find ourselves at the bottom of the ladder, taking things one rung at a time and beginning the climb.
Patience is a difficult skill to master, but as we have learned over the past months, when it is coupled with diligence and hard work, the results can be BIG. Once again, here we go!
** Shameless plug…if you (or someone you know) is buying or selling a home, or has built a home that is approaching 1 year in age, and you are in the Greater Houston area or surrounding counties, please consider SafeShield Inspections, LLC for your home inspection! **