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  1. #1
    Richard Senn's Avatar
    Richard Senn Guest

    Default Well, I guess it's time.

    I'm filling out my application form to take the national home inspection exam. I've been studying since August, completed the InterNACHI course, completed the 4 month instructor led course at Tulsa Tech, and I've done a couple inspections with the instructor from class.

    I was consistently scoring in the 96% on the CompuCram software and then this week I paid to take an actual 50 question practice test structured like the national exam.

    I gotta say I was feeling pretty darn good before I took that 50 question practice test. I was in the 84% range on the practice test but the way it's structured (no true/false and pick the most correct answer of 4) makes it a lot tougher. I second guessed myself on a couple of the questions I missed, so now I'm a little nervous about the full exam.

    Did any of you guys take the practice exam or use CompuCram? How did your results with these compare to your exam results?

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  2. #2
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    Default Re: Well, I guess it's time.

    Quote Originally Posted by Richard Senn View Post
    I'm filling out my application form to take the national home inspection exam. I've been studying since August, completed the InterNACHI course, completed the 4 month instructor led course at Tulsa Tech, and I've done a couple inspections with the instructor from class.

    I was consistently scoring in the 96% on the CompuCram software and then this week I paid to take an actual 50 question practice test structured like the national exam.

    I gotta say I was feeling pretty darn good before I took that 50 question practice test. I was in the 84% range on the practice test but the way it's structured (no true/false and pick the most correct answer of 4) makes it a lot tougher. I second guessed myself on a couple of the questions I missed, so now I'm a little nervous about the full exam.

    Did any of you guys take the practice exam or use CompuCram? How did your results with these compare to your exam results?
    Don't worry about the exam... As long as you know the basics you should be fine. Know an electrical panel inside and out; know basic plumbing, traps, connections, drains, types of pipes, etc. inside and out;know the basics on foundation and framing design and terminology; know all about roofs, shingles, and roof structures; know basics about stairs, steps, landings, etc; know about window glazing and when safety glazing is needed; know all about HVAC systems, gas, oil and electric; water heaters and boilers have been know to be in the exam; know about EIFS and other types of cladding's.
    You just need to have a good understanding of what a home inspection is all about.

    Have you looked at the NHIE exam blueprint? If tells you the areas that you need to know and study. You can get it off the NHIE website.

    Scott Patterson, ACI
    Spring Hill, TN
    www.traceinspections.com

  3. #3
    Richard Senn's Avatar
    Richard Senn Guest

    Default Re: Well, I guess it's time.

    Quote Originally Posted by Scott Patterson View Post
    Don't worry about the exam... As long as you know the basics you should be fine. Know an electrical panel inside and out; know basic plumbing, traps, connections, drains, types of pipes, etc. inside and out;know the basics on foundation and framing design and terminology; know all about roofs, shingles, and roof structures; know basics about stairs, steps, landings, etc; know about window glazing and when safety glazing is needed; know all about HVAC systems, gas, oil and electric; water heaters and boilers have been know to be in the exam; know about EIFS and other types of cladding's.
    You just need to have a good understanding of what a home inspection is all about.

    Have you looked at the NHIE exam blueprint? If tells you the areas that you need to know and study. You can get it off the NHIE website.
    I've seen the blueprint, that's what I'm studying up until I take the exam. I guess I apply, and then they send me available times to take the test so I've probably got another week or two to study.

    Think my problem is going with my first choice. I did the same thing in college on multiple choice pick the most right answer type tests. I would say "that's the right answer" keep reading and think "that sounds good to" and then talk myself out of it as if I was some kind of trick question.

    It's odd I can look at my college transcript and every class that was an essay test I got an A and the multiple choice classes I got B's. I guess that's why I got a little leary of the exam, knowing I tend to do this. Not to mention it feels like information overload I've been reading so much.


  4. #4
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    Default Re: Well, I guess it's time.

    Buy and study the Code Check series of books. When I took the exam, a number of questions were directly related to info within these books. And they're good to have.

    "It takes a big man to cry. It takes an even bigger man to laugh at that man". - Jack Handey

  5. #5
    Richard Senn's Avatar
    Richard Senn Guest

    Default Re: Well, I guess it's time.

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Ostrowski View Post
    Buy and study the Code Check series of books. When I took the exam, a number of questions were directly related to info within these books. And they're good to have.
    I've got Code Check complete, I'll be spending 30-45 minutes with it each night before bed.


    One question I forgot to ask was if the national exam had questions about escheat, police power, eminent domanin, deed restrictions, covenants, etc..? CompuCram had several questions like this that I was really surprised to see.


  6. #6
    Ted Menelly's Avatar
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    Default Re: Well, I guess it's time.

    When I took my WDI (wood destroying insect inspection) test here in Texas I started reading the first question and put a dot next to an answer, second question same thing, third question same thing.

    I finally said the hell with that and went back to question one and answered every question one right after another non stop and no second guessing. I walked out of there in half the time as everyone else and still passed the test.

    I do not see the need to try to trip someone up in a test. You know the material. The only thing those tests do is slow you down and make you study each answer to pull the right one out. All a bunch of silliness. Then after the mind twist of the first question you only have another 50 to 100 more mind twists to get to the end. Absolutely not necessary. All that succeeds in doing is giving you a headache. After you finish with all the mind twists you start second guessing yourself again to only find out you passed it anyway as you thought to begin with.


  7. #7
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    Default Re: Well, I guess it's time.

    Quote Originally Posted by Richard Senn View Post
    I've got Code Check complete, I'll be spending 30-45 minutes with it each night before bed.


    One question I forgot to ask was if the national exam had questions about escheat, police power, eminent domanin, deed restrictions, covenants, etc..? CompuCram had several questions like this that I was really surprised to see.
    No, you will not find questions like those. You will have questions on general business ethics, basic contracts, business practice, and reporting.

    If you know the material you will be fine. Keep in mind that the question is looking for the best answer. You will have several answers that will look good and sound good but only one is correct.

    When you register for the exam online you will be given the days that it is available at that time.

    Scott Patterson, ACI
    Spring Hill, TN
    www.traceinspections.com

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Well, I guess it's time.

    Quote Originally Posted by Richard Senn View Post
    I've got Code Check complete, I'll be spending 30-45 minutes with it each night before bed.


    One question I forgot to ask was if the national exam had questions about escheat, police power, eminent domanin, deed restrictions, covenants, etc..? CompuCram had several questions like this that I was really surprised to see.
    The exam I took didn't have anything dealing with those issues. The problem with some practice exams, at least some that I came across, is that the questions may be weighted to the area of the country more than you would find in the real exam. One practice test I took had a lot of questions about pools. The only relative question on the exam I took concerned the clearance of electric service drop wires that passed over a pool.

    The above statements are expressed solely as my opinion and in all probability will conflict with someone else's.
    Stu, Fredericksburg VA

  9. #9
    Jim Funkhouser's Avatar
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    Default Re: Well, I guess it's time.

    Richard,

    Listen carefully to what Scott Patterson is telling you to do. Not only has he been on the EBPHI Board of Directors (and is currently), but he served two years as its' President. All of the reference materials used to create the item bank are listed on the NHIE web site. You will find that pool questions are based on the IRC and can be found in two different places in the code book. That has to be the single most complaint letter I get...questions about pools and lawn sprinkler systems but they have the answers if they have a copy of the IRC.

    One important point for you, and any inspector preparing for the exam, to remember is that we are looking for the "Best Answer". Some of the questions must be read carefully to figure out what we're asking for. Take your time and Don't Panic! It sound's to me like you've done your education. Study but don't get a knot in your stomach. The exam is designed to determine minimum competency.

    Before coming on the EBPHI BOD, I was required to pass the exam and used a number of resources to study, including the CompuCram program. That program cost me more than I wished to shell out but I was bound and determined to ace the exam (which, uh, I didn't...got a good score but didn't ace it). Afterwards I found that program to be of little help. The best source to help prepare me for the kind of questions I might see was from Carson Dunlap . I can't remember the name of the book as I donated it to my chapter but it had to do with studying for tests.

    I hope this helps and Good Luck!

    Jim Funkhouser
    President,
    EBPHI


  10. #10
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    Default Re: Well, I guess it's time.

    Just move Colifornya (sorry, its customary to make fun of our Gov, Ex Gov). Anyhow, there's no regs here.

    The MAZZA INSPECTION GROUP
    www.mazzainspections.com
    Level III Thermo-picture-taker-er...er

  11. #11
    Gary Winfield's Avatar
    Gary Winfield Guest

    Default Re: Well, I guess it's time.

    I did just like you on the practice tests. Really didn't seem to help me. Go with your first gut response. Do NOt start changing your mind going back and forth. This can get you in trouble. There will be very similiar answers. Go with the one that seems to b the best choice. I found the exam to be very hard wih very few easy questions. Also remember, answer the questions as if you are in an academic setting (as a student) and NOT as a field inspector. GOOD LUCK !!!


  12. #12
    Gary Winfield's Avatar
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    Default Re: Well, I guess it's time.

    Sample questions you may or may not see.



    Mid-efficiency gas-fired furnaces –
    a. have condensate tubing
    b. may be vented through the sidewall
    c. never had plastic venting
    d. always have an induced draft fan
    e. have seasonal efficiencies in the 85% to 90% range

    Offset walls supporting floor loads above
    a. can cause a floor to sag near the wall
    b. are not permitted
    c. cannot be offset by more than 3 feet from their support below
    d. are unlimited in location as long as they are perpendicular to the joists below
    e. are unlimited in location as long as they are parallel to their joists below



    After entering the service box, the neutral service entrance conductor should –
    a. connect to the terminal with the grounding electrode conductor and the service neutral
    b. connect to the main breaker
    c. go directly to the distribution panel
    d. connect to the grounding conductor bar in the distribution panel
    e. connect to the main fuses on the line side


    The most serious implication of any insulation, air/vapor barrier or ventilation deficiency is –
    a. Excess heat loss
    b. Excess heat gain in summer
    c. Reduced comfort levels
    d. Window condensation
    e. Rot


    The bottom cap flashing for a masonry chimney has a single piece of metal let into the mortar joint and nailed to the shingle surface so it won’t lift up. The flashing extends over the shingle surface approximately 4 inches. No leakage is evident inside the home. You tell your client that –
    a. “The chimney base flashing has been properly installed.”
    b. “The bottom cap flashing should extend down the shingle surface by at least 6 inches. The flashing has to be replaced.”
    c. “The exposed nail heads in the bottom cap flashing should be removed.”
    d. “This is not an ideal installation as the nail holes may leak and movement of the roof deck relative to the chimney may pull the flashing out, but is typical and acceptable.” Since the flashing hasn’t been pulled yet, you recommend monitoring rather than replacement.
    e. “This is not a proper cap flashing, as a hem was not created. The flashing should be replaced.”

    GOOD LUCK !!!!1




  13. #13
    Join Date
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    Default Re: Well, I guess it's time.

    When my state licensed inspectors I already had about ten years under my belt. But there was no grandfathering so everyone had to sit for the exam. I attended 3 nights of review put on by a local chapter - not to learn the material but to make sure I was ready to answer the questions. Being an analytical type, I'll look at a question every way to Sunday. Bad idea. Don't get hung up on all the considerations that can whirl around in your thought processes. My best advice: simply read the question for what it is. What is it that is being asked - don't read things into it. Had I tried to use field experiences to answer the questions I would have been all over the wall with wrong answers. By far, this was the best advice I got out of the refresher class.

    Eric Barker, ACI
    Lake Barrington, IL

  14. #14
    Jim Funkhouser's Avatar
    Jim Funkhouser Guest

    Default Re: Well, I guess it's time.

    Gary,

    Not too shabby. Did you make those questions up? If so, I might have a job for you. . How well versed are you in psychometrics? Item writing is a real uh...bear despite what most may think. The items cannot be leading nor negative nor allude to other item's answers. They get vetted by psychometricians, spewed back to the SME's and re-worked before they go BACK to the psychometrians and then, after all of that. these items get tested for a year to see how well they perform without being scored.

    Jim


  15. #15
    Richard Senn's Avatar
    Richard Senn Guest

    Default Re: Well, I guess it's time.

    Well, you have to apply for you license with certification that you've taken your required 90 hr. course and then they will give you approval to pay and take the test.

    To me it's completely backwards to pay $280 for my license and application before even taking and paying $200 for the test.

    Seems like taking the test would come first and if I pass then I'd would apply for the license but what do I know. I've been waiting over a week now for the approval to take the test from the Construction Industries Board.


  16. #16
    Richard Senn's Avatar
    Richard Senn Guest

    Default Re: Well, I guess it's time.

    I passed the test today!


  17. #17
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    Default Re: Well, I guess it's time.

    Quote Originally Posted by Richard Senn View Post
    I passed the test today!
    Congratulations! Wasn't so awfully bad after all was it? Pass/Fail test. Actual score? Who cares?

    The above statements are expressed solely as my opinion and in all probability will conflict with someone else's.
    Stu, Fredericksburg VA

  18. #18
    Join Date
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    Default Re: Well, I guess it's time.

    Quote Originally Posted by Richard Senn View Post
    I passed the test today!

    Congratulations!!

    Bruce Thompson, Lic. #9199
    www.TylerHomeInspector.com
    Home Inspections in the Tyler and East Texas area

  19. #19
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    Default Re: Well, I guess it's time.

    Good for you. Now, learn the business and make some money.

    Erby Crofutt, Georgetown, KY - Read my Blog here: Erby the Central Kentucky Home Inspector B4 U Close Home Inspections www.b4uclose.com www.kentuckyradon.com
    Find on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/B4UCloseInspections

  20. #20
    Richard Senn's Avatar
    Richard Senn Guest

    Default Re: Well, I guess it's time.

    Quote Originally Posted by Erby Crofutt View Post
    Good for you. Now, learn the business and make some money.
    That's my intent. Still would like to tag along with another inspector some and then inspect all my friends and neighbors for free. I've done a couple inspections in class but real world experience is what I need now before I start charging.

    You can only get so much from a book and studying.


  21. #21
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    Default Re: Well, I guess it's time.

    Quote Originally Posted by Richard Senn View Post

    You can only get so much from a book and studying.
    That's the truth.

    Congrats Richard.

    "It takes a big man to cry. It takes an even bigger man to laugh at that man". - Jack Handey

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