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Your realtor may be a good source of referrals for home inspectors, but some realtors will simply give you the top card in a pile of business cards dropped off by home inspectors. It's always a good idea to do your homework when hiring an inspector. Home inspectors usually need to be licensed, but requirements vary by state. Membership in a professional society such as the American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI), the National Association of Home Inspectors (NAHI) or the National Association of Certified Home Inspectors (NACHI) is usually an indication that the home inspector takes his or her profession seriously, but it's not a guarantee of competence. Try to get references in your community to verify that the home inspector you're considering will do a good job for you.