June '16

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68 • RV PRO • JUNE 2016 rv-pro.com anything about them and their values; not knowing the history of them." Anderson is NRVIA's director. Like Cooper and his wife, Evada, Anderson and his wife, Kathy Jo, are full-time RVers. More than 600 people have become certified inspectors since the NRVIA pro- gram began in January 2014. Classes are held at various campgrounds across the country, and a small number of inspector candidates opt for online courses. Cooper says those seeking to become inspectors include funeral directors, bankers, college professors and retired military members, just to name a few. There are dealership techs and mobile RV techs among the ranks, and they adhere to the one-year rule barring inspectors from working on units they've inspected, he adds. There are more than 300 working Level 1 inspectors currently, and many others choose to use the training for just their own knowledge or to help them work as campground maintenance technicians. Each inspector completes either the five- day hands-on training program or an online program of recorded videos and quizzes. With either path, each inspector is required to take a final exam and a code of ethics/ standards of practice exam. Level 1 certified RV inspectors often work with banks, insurance companies and extended- service companies to do verification work, according to Cooper. The Level 1 inspector usually spends a few hours looking at the RV in question, and he or she is skilled enough to work as a walk-through technician. Advanced Training Available for Inspectors For those who want a higher degree of training, NRVIA offers certification for Level 2 inspectors. Currently, there are less than 100 Level 2 inspectors who have completed both the five-day hands- on course and a second course, Learn By the Doing. In the second course, inspectors-in- training learn to scope an RV using a sys- tematic method so items aren't overlooked. They use proprietary software specifically designed for NRVIA, and they must com- plete a set number of inspections to dem- onstrate their mastery of the process. Once students complete the second level, they can either choose to work for themselves as RV inspectors and seek jobs representing either buyers or sellers, or they can contract with companies such as RV Inspection Connection, which offers inspections in the United States and Canada. (Cooper is a part owner in that business as well.) "With those folks, typically, we take them to an RV park and they bring their units," Cooper says. "They inspect each other's RVs." One trainer has a connection with a dealership in Florida, and the dealership lets students go on site and inspect the used units. That works out well because the dealership receives inspection reports at no charge. Cooper is quick to add that NRVIA's inspection reports are more detailed than the certified pre-owned, one-page A big focus for Cooper is showing techs how to diagnose and repair problems with appliances. Here he shows technicians how to pressure test a propane stove's burner.

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