Overview

A Home Inspection Business is defined as the activity of providing home inspection services to consumers.

A Home Inspection means an opinion as to the condition of a dwelling based primarily on a non-invasive examination of readily accessible features and components of the dwelling.

Exclusions

A business operating in only the way(s) listed below does not require licensing as a Home Inspection Business:

  • contracts for inspections of common areas of a condominium property.
  • contracts for inspections of dwellings to be used for commercial or business purposes, including use as a rental property.
  • contracts for inspections of dwellings conducted by a person participating in a home inspection training course or as part of a test home inspection if the consideration, if any, for the home inspection is paid to the educational institution or supervisor of the test home inspection and no remuneration is paid to the person conducting the home inspection.
  • inspections of dwellings by a safety codes officer pursuant to the Safety Codes Act.
  • inspections of dwellings for purposes of constructing, altering, maintaining, repairing or improving the dwelling.

Cost

There is a 2-year licensing fee payable to the Government of Alberta. Fees are based upon the number of home inspectors licensed with the home inspection business. Fees for a home inspection business having:

  • 3 or fewer licensed home inspectors is $500
  • more than 3 but fewer than 10 licensed home inspectors is $700
  • 10 or more licensed home inspectors is $900

How to apply

You will need to complete an application form, an application form for each Home Inspector, provide a security, provide proof of errors and omissions insurance, provide a copy of the business’ standard contract and pay a licensing fee. You’ll also need to ensure your home inspector(s) are licensed to operate in Alberta. To get started, follow these instructions to save and open the application and other applicable forms.

Failure to provide complete information will delay processing of your application and may result in a refund of your fees and closure of your file.

Step 1. Fill out the application form

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Application for a Home Inspection Business Licence (PDF, 82 KB)

Step 2. Fill out an application form for each home inspector

Each home inspector within your business will need to complete an application for a home inspector licence.

For more information see the Home Inspector page.

Step 3. Obtain and provide security

Obtain and provide an original, signed security in the amount of $10,000*. You may get this security in one of 4 ways:

  • General Surety Bond
  • Cash Security Agreement accompanied by one of the following:
    • Irrevocable Letter of Credit
    • Cash (bank draft, money order or certified cheque payable to the Government of Alberta)
    • Term deposit or similar instrument in the name of the Government of Alberta, c/o Service Alberta, 3rd Floor, 10155 102 Street NW, Edmonton, Alberta, T5J 4L4, in trust for (name of licensee)

Depending upon the option selected please do the following:

  • General Surety Bond (PDF, 121 KB)
    • The surety company will complete and provide you with a signed and sealed original of the form. You will need to review, sign, affix your company seal or have your signature witnessed, and provide the original to the address on the form.
    • The form may be found at https://cfr.forms.gov.ab.ca/Form/CONP0045.pdf (PDF, 121 KB). Please provide this address to your Surety Company.
  • Cash Security Agreement (PDF, 120 KB)
  • Irrevocable Letter of Credit (PDF, 119 KB)
    • The financial institution will complete and provide you with a signed original of the form letter. You will need to review and provide the original to the address on the form.
    • The form may be found at https://cfr.forms.gov.ab.ca/Form/CONP0123.pdf (PDF, 119 KB). Please provide this address to your financial institution.

* In accordance with the Security agreement, the security provided will be held for 2 years after the agreement expires or 2 years and 3 months (27 months) from the date the business licence expires, or the business closes or longer in the event of a claim being received. The amount of security given is a minimum security requirement. The amount could increase at the discretion of the Director of Fair Trading. When setting the security amount, the Director can consider the department’s previous history with the business and its partners or directors, the business’ financial history, and criminal convictions.

Step 4. Provide proof of errors and ommissions insurance

Provide proof that the applicant has errors and omission insurance specifically in respect of the carrying on of the home inspection business covering at least $1,000,000 per claim and $2,000,000 aggregate for all claims within a one-year period.

Step 5. Provide a copy of the business’ standard contract

Written contracts will be required. The contract must conform to the requirements set out in the Home Inspection Business Regulation under the Consumer Protection Act.

A home inspection business shall ensure that every home inspection contract is in writing and includes the following:

  • the consumer’s name and address
  • the home inspection business’s name and licence number, business address, including street address, telephone number and if applicable, fax number and e-mail address
  • the name and licence number of the home inspector conducting the inspection
  • the date of the contract
  • the date on which the home inspection is to occur
  • the date the completed home inspection report is to be provided to the consumer
  • the address of the dwelling to be inspected
  • if the contract does not include an inspection of any of the following features or components of the dwelling, a statement, to be initialed by the consumer, indicating that fact:
    • roofing, flashings or chimney
    • exterior, including lot gradings, walkways, driveways, retaining walls, patios and decks
    • structure
    • electrical
    • heating
    • heat pumps and cooling
    • insulation
    • plumbing
  • interior
  • if the contract does not include an inspection of mould or asbestos, a statement, to be initialed by the consumer, indicating that fact
  • a statement that unless expressly stated in the contract, the contract does not include an inspection of any outbuildings or other structures not attached to the dwelling other than a garage or carport
  • a statement that the inspection will be non-invasive unless the parties agree to specified invasive procedures
  • if all or any part of the home inspection is to be subcontracted to another home inspection business, the name and licence number of that home inspection business and a statement, to be initialed by the consumer, indicating that fact
  • the signatures of the consumer and home inspector with the name of each printed beside or below their signature

Step 6. Submit the application form

Email your application form, home inspector application(s), proof of errors and omissions insurance, and a copy of the business’ standard contract to sa.businesslicensing@gov.ab.ca. Provide your original security document(s) to the address noted on the form(s). You will be contacted to set-up online payment for the one-time licensing fee.

You may also mail or drop off your application package to the address noted on the application. You may pay by credit card online, by credit card or debit card in person at our office, or you may mail a cheque or money order to our office.

When paying by cheque or money order please make it payable to the Government of Alberta.

Processing of your application will not start until payment is received.

After you apply

Licence takes effect the day the licence is issued.

It is your responsibility to ensure your licence is in force as long as you continue to do business. Once your licence is issued please make note of the expiry date and ensure your licence is renewed prior to this date.

Licence holders must notify Service Alberta in writing within 15 days of a change in:

  • business address
  • partners of the business if the licence is issued to a partnership
  • officers or directors of the corporation if the licence is issued to a corporation

Licence holders must notify Service Alberta in writing within 15 days of ceasing to carry on the activities for which the licence was issued.

Your responsibilities

  • A home inspection business shall ensure that a home inspection is conducted only by a licensed home inspector.
  • Home inspection businesses should pay particular attention to the following sections of the Home Inspection Business Regulation:
    • Section 6 regarding error and omissions insurance that must be maintained
    • Section 9 regarding licensing requirements
    • Section 22 regarding wording that is prohibited
    • Section 25 regarding compensation for damages
    • Section 26 regarding prohibitions
  • If any of the applicant, partners, directors or officers primary residence is Out-of-Canada, a criminal record check is required from the jurisdiction of the individual’s primary residence which follows the requirements set out by Citizenship and Immigration Canada or a check provided by a local policing organization (i.e., state or municipal police service) provided the results include national records. For US applicants, a criminal history record information check performed by a vendor from this list is also acceptable.
  • Compliance

Copies of legislation can be obtained from the Queen’s Printer Bookstore.

Renewing a licence

You may use Service Alberta’s PABLO (Province of Alberta Business Licensing Online) to renew your licence.

PABLO System

This system is used for processing payments, printing issued licenses and renewing licenses.

  • Applications submitted by email, fax or without payment will have a user ID created in the name of the applicant and provided to their email address. They will need to submit payment or their application will not be processed.
  • Once issued, licenses are made available electronically for printing by the business. If an ID does not already exist one will be created and provided to the applicant’s email address along with notification the licence has been issued. If an ID was created for payment of the fees the applicant will receive an email notification the licence has been issued.
  • Within 60 days prior to the expiry of a licence a renewal may be processed using this system. Mark your calendar as a reminder so you stay continuously licensed.

Contact

To connect with the Consumer Contact Centre:

Hours: 8:15 am to 4:30 pm (open Monday to Friday, closed statutory holidays)
Phone: 780-427-4088
Toll free: 1-877-427-4088 (in Alberta)
Email: sa.businesslicensing@gov.ab.ca