Ontario plans to introduce legislation this fall that, if passed, would regulate the province’s home inspection industry in order to provide better consumer protection. Currently, home inspectors are one of the only professionals involved in real estate transactions that are not provincially regulated.
The changes were first proposed after 35 recommendations were made by a 16-member expert panel, which were then supported by both industry and consumers. They include requiring home inspectors to be licensed with proper qualifications; setting minimum standards for contracts, home inspection reports, disclosures and the performance of home inspections; and establishing an independent Administrative Authority to administer and enforce the home inspection licensing legislation and associated regulations.
The changes would ensure consumers receive quality advice, are protected from surprise costs and are aware of safety issues before buying a home. This will also create a level playing field for home inspectors, preventing those with little or no training from offering lower rates to compete with qualitied professionals.
“Our government is committed to protecting consumers, which is why introducing this proposed legislation remains a top priority for my ministry,” said Marie-France Lalonde, Minister of Government and Consumer Services, in a press release. “If passed, this proposed legislation will help to build a stronger foundation for the industry and even better protect consumers throughout the home-buying process.”