Updated: Apr 26
You’re ready to start your home inspection business and you need some clever business name ideas. But, how do you choose a great home inspection business name? Do you do something bland and vanilla, like affordable, advantage, total or something else which merits zero imagination, storytelling, or messaging; and invites zero client interaction?
Do you call it Sam’s Inspection Service? What about SIS? Yes, an acronym! How about something related to where the small business is located, Sunshine State Inspections, Rocky Mountain Inspections, North Florida Inspections, Gulf Coast Inspections… Doesn’t say much to your potential customers or referral partners, does it?
Wait! Let’s take a giant step backwards and think about how it will look to a potential customer, or a real estate agent…
And what if you are still in business in 10-15 years; do you want it to be a business you can sell? Anyone not named Sam, might not want to buy Sam’s Inspection Service.
How do I come up with a catchy home inspection name?
Let’s start by getting out of our own way. This isn’t about you or me. It’s about your clients, or people who are going to be your referral partners. What should they see on paper when they see 3 home inspectors to call? What will they think? What emotions might they have?
Will your inspection company name tell a story? Will it be memorable? Will it trigger a reaction? Is it something you can use in your marketing efforts?
If you get big enough, is it something you can trademark? [Which means, that no one else has already thought of it.] Does it infringe on any trademarks? If there is already a company called Veterans Inspections Company, even if they don’t have it trademarked, you can’t start the same name company in the same locale, not without the expectation of legal problems.
Instead of giving you my opinion of the perfect home inspection business name for you, let me tell you how we came up with one that we and our customers love for us.
When I first started, I didn’t even have an inspection company name, just Curt doing inspections for the state of Florida. Once I branched out on my own, I was doing a ton, and I mean a ton… of four point inspections, 10-15 per day. So, I called my first company name Florida Four Point. Not too compelling, but at least in the mid 2000’s, when someone was searching online for a four-point inspection… in Florida, they found my company.
After realizing that that didn’t have a ton of marketing legs, or room for ancillary services, I sat down with a family friend who was a designer and an art director.
I rebranded and called it Elite Analysis. Cool name, hey? Doesn’t say a lot, but it felt pretty cool. I sold that business in 2014. To my knowledge, it is still running under that name.
When I moved across the country and started another inspection company, we first called it HERO Inspections & Environmental. Why? We were considering Protect Inspect. ProtectInspect.com was $900, and HEROinspect.com was basically free. Guess which one we went with… But, heroinspect.com looks a lot like HEROINspect.com… oops, not great. Let’s make HERO an acronym!
Where did HERO come from? We offer a ton of extras with our inspections, and we needed a way to package it, so we called it the HERO Home Protection Plan. And we took it further, HERO was an acronym, that stood for Helping Every Realtor b Outstanding! We were out to make Realtors look good for having recommended us, and we did that by making the client feel like a HERO with the info we gave them as they were buying a property. Perfect!
Until it wasn’t. The word Realtor, is trademarked, and you can’t use it in ANY way at all, unless you are Realtor, talking about your services. So, yes, if you see someone write Realtor in their advertising, that is something NAR would probably like to chat with you about.
More importantly, as we expanded across the nation, even though we had HERO Inspections & Environmental trademarked, if we went into a new city, any overlap or confusion would be a problem for us. Even Hero Home Improvement in Phoenix could say that we were just a little too close. And they would win in trademark court. Do you know how many guys did 2 years in the US Army and came home to be Hero Home Inspections, wanting to use the American flag for their marketing? It's a lot.
Back to the 'business name ideas' drawing board. And really, truly, from scratch. But WAY smarter than the last few times. Needs to be clever, never be never-thought of before, tell a story, be a brand, be a marketing trigger, have a message. Hmm, that’s a big ask.
You know who has a great company name? Apple computers. The two have nothing to do with each other. A perfectly protectable trademark.
We knew that we needed a home inspection business name that would meet all these crazy requirements. We also knew that the real estate world is 80% female and at least 50% of the time, it is the wife who calls to schedule the inspection. We wanted to speak to women, while still being known as a super thorough inspection company. Since we are big on chatting, taking the edge off, not scaring people and trying to be the friendliest inspectors you’ve ever met…
Inspections Over Coffee! Months in the making, several iterations, the genesis over many months and inputs from tons of different people.
Now we walk into offices with coffee tumblers, coffee stations for open houses, and at least 30% of the people we meet in the real estate world saying, we love your company name.
It’s memorable, and my favorite moment was when I told the story of where it came from and a few women got angry about how sometimes they are talked down to, around to or over, with blue collar, car-buying, oil changes, etc.. And we said, that’s what this is all about. Kate, the Realtor, said, “that is SO aware!”
Best compliment we could ever get!