Don't get fooled by a textbook license. All inspectors are required to obtain and maintain an updated license. Although there are no checks and balances in place to verify that textbook knowledge has ever been applied in the field or in real life. A home inspector has been trained on proper clearances of power lines, or GFCI location compared to water sources, but that's not always enough. If the home inspector hasn't spent any time "doing" it there is a good chance their knowledge base will not be complete enough to give you a thorough inspection.
Ask questions and interview your future home inspector about their experience and qualifications. If they cannot answer truthfully, find one that can. Home inspections are not something to get frugal about.
Make sure your home inspections company is licensed AND insured. Even qualified home inspectors make mistakes from time to time. Perhaps an object was in front of a critical component making it visually inaccessible, or maybe physical access was not allowed to the entire crawl space. In any case, there are instances where something might be missed and if it wasn't documented properly there may be a case for reimbursement.
Make sure your home inspector carries E&O Insurance (Errors & Omissions). Having current insurance also provides a testimonial to the "insurability" of the home inspector. If they cannot obtain insurance, there is a reason!
We live in a world of instant gratification and real estate is no different. Make sure your home inspector uses technology to benefit you. If you can believe it, there are still home inspection companies out there that take upwards of two days to deliver your inspection report. This is an eternity in a real estate transaction. Your Broker will not be pleased, it will make your sellers more nervous than needed, and it's just downright too long. Make sure your home inspector uses technology that can deliver your report instantly. There is no need to wait around these days...absolutely none!
Size does matter:
This will potentially come across as rude but it HAS to be said. Make sure your home inspector is "fit" enough to fit in all the spaces they need to fit in. Crawl space access panels are only required to be 18"x30", keep that in mind while choosing your home inspector. Don't let this politically correct world we live in these days from allow you all the rights you are entitled to. MAKE SURE your inspector can physically access crawl spaces and attic spaces as it's a critical component to a quality home inspection.
Reviews are super helpful:
In today's world we can find information in a heartbeat using a tool we all carry around with us 24x7, our phones. Make sure your future home inspection company and hopefully the specific home inspector has reviews. Whether it's on Google, HomeAdvisor, Yelp, or other online means do your due diligence and make sure your home inspector choice isn't a poor one. Don't accept anything less than your comfort level. If a home inspector does his job correctly there should be minimal, if any, negative reviews. If there are, run for the hills and find another!