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This sample marketing plan was created with Marketing Plan Pro software.

Inspect A-bode is entering its first year of operation and owner Chek Domisile recognizes the imperative nature of a well designed marketing plan that is not just lip service, but actually implemented. The basic market need is for a professional, experienced, home inspection service that provides valuable insight regarding the condition of an existing residential home prior to its sale/purchase.

Market Summary

Inspect A-bode possesses good information regarding the market and knows a great deal about the common attributes of the most prized customers. This information will be leveraged to better understand who is served, their specific needs, and how Inspect A-bode can best communicate with them. Inspect A-bode recognizes that the collection of information about the market and its customers is an ongoing process that must be continually attended to in order to provide the highest quality level of market analysis.

Market Needs

Inspect A-bode is providing its customers with a professional, complete, inspection service for residential homes. These inspections provide the prospective buyer with ample information to make an educated decision regarding the purchase of the house, its current condition, as well as the cost for needed repairs. Inspect A-bode seeks to fulfill the following benefits that are important to customers.

  • Thoroughness- A compete inspection will be made of the residence, informing the prospective buyer of any latent defects.
  • Convenience- The inspections can be made to any house within a 50-mile radius of Washington.
  • Professionalism- The home building industry (from which many inspectors come) is not known for its professionalism or integrity. Inspect A-bode sees their ability to provide the uppermost professionalism as a competitive advantage.
  • Competitive price- Due to many years in the industry, Inspect A-bode is able to offer competitive pricing by gaining efficiencies in the inspection process, reducing the time required to deliver a comprehensive inspection.

The market trend for home inspections evidences an industry growth rate that is greater than that seen in similar industries. This can be explained by the fact that home inspections are a relatively new service and a valuable source of information to all involved in a house sale. Over time prior inspections will become a standard requirement when purchasing a home. Trends that have been observed within the industry are:

  • An increasingly larger base of service providers.
  • More home buyers are requesting inspections. 
  • More real estate agents that suggest or require inspections.
  • Many of the service providers are splitting their professional time between home construction/repair and inspections as opposed to being full time inspectors.

Market Growth

In 2000, the home inspection market in the U.S. reached $123 million in revenue. The growth rate of the industry is projected to maintain 12% for the next several years. As more and more buyers become accustomed to researching their large purchases first, demand for inspections will be fueled by their need to do due diligence.

SWOT Analysis

The following SWOT analysis captures the key strengths and weaknesses within the company and describes the opportunities and threats facing Inspect A-bode.


  • Strong relationships with real estate agents.
  • Extensive industry knowledge and experience.
  • Efficient work-flow designs allowing competitive pricing and above-market margins.


  • The lack of initial brand equity, a function of being a start-up company.
  • Balancing the allocation of labor between inspections and business development.
  • A limited amount of start-up capital.


  • The participation within a growing industry.
  • A decrease in interest rates that will spur home purchases.
  • The industry is poised to grow, and Inspect A-bode is an early entrant in the field.


  • Increasing competition as the industry becomes validated.
  • The general economy can have significant negative effects on homes sales, therefore home inspections as well.


There are many different competitors in the home inspection market. At first glance, the service appears to be commodity like. Most people have the same service offering, the same type of inspections, the same price, etc. However, the level of experience and professionalism of the service provider does indeed differentiate the companies.

The buying patterns regarding the home buyers seems to be based on referrals and advertisements. The home buyer will often ask someone in the industry if they can recommend a home inspectoion provider. If they do not know anyone to ask they will typically look in the number of local magazines for homes and find an advertisement in there. Lastly, they would check the Yellow Pages.

The home sellers will either ask their realtor or they will look for some sort of advertisement.

The buying pattern for the realtors is that they typically will know of one or a few inspectors that they send their clients to. Because they are in the industry, networking will take precedence over advertisements.

Service Offering

Inspect A-bode offers residential home inspections for both buyers and sellers. Initially the majority of service calls will likely be referrals from strategic partnerships with realtors. Inspect A-bode's standard inspection includes addressing:

  • Site: Land contour, drainage, driveways, walkways, porches, decks, retaining walls, parking structures, and evidence of abandoned oil tanks.
  • Foundation: Cracks, settlement, deterioration, moisture influx, and piers.
  • Exterior: Siding, trim, entry doors, garage doors, windows, and chimneys.
  • Structure: Framing of sub-floors, stairs, walls, ceilings, and roofs.
  • Roofing: Roof coverings, flashings, skylights, gutters, downspouts, eaves, and soffits.
  • Plumbing: Water pressure, piping, fixtures, faucets, drains, vents, and water heaters.
  • Electrical: Service conductors, main and sub-panels, breakers and fuses, grounding, switches, receptacles, fixtures, fans, smoke detectors, GFI function, etc.
  • Heating: Furnace or boiler, ducts, baseboard heaters, radiators, registers, woodstoves, and central air conditioning.
  • Insulation: Attic, ceiling, wall and floor insulation, and vapor barriers.
  • Ventilation: Attic, crawlspace, kitchen, bath and laundry ventilation.
  • Interior: Walls, floors, ceilings, doors, woodwork, cabinets, bathroom finish, fireplaces, etc.
  • Built-In Appliances: Ranges, ovens, microwaves, disposals, dishwashers, and trash compactors.
  • Pest & Dry Rot: Inspection for termites, carpenter ants, beetles, wood rot, and rodent infestation.
  • Carbon Monoxide: Measurement of furnace, water heater, and range output.

Optional services will include electromagnetic field testing ($45), radon testing ($200), and asbestos testing ($120).

A comprehensive written report (typically around 12 pages) will accompany the service. Inspect A-bode suggests all clients be present during the inspection to increase their comprehension of the written report. The cost of the full service is $200-$400, depending on size of home, layout, and any areas such as a swimming pool requiring special attention.

Keys to Success

The following variables are the keys to success for Inspect A-bode:

  • Professionalism.
  • Customer service.
  • Providing valuable information.

Critical Issues

 Inspect A-bode is still in the speculative stages as a service provider. It must take a fiscally conservative approach, recognizing that it takes time to build reputation and goodwill within the community. If this is done effectively, over time, the business will flourish.

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