Tag Archives: Clyde Yost

NPI/GPI Prepares to Celebrate 30 Years by Remembering First Franchisee

By Roland Bates, President, NPI/GPI

Roland Bates, president and founder of National Property Inspections, Inc.

Roland Bates, president and founder of National Property Inspections, Inc.

It will soon be 30 years since I sold the first NPI franchise. I am pleased to say that franchisee, Clyde Yost, is still with us. The first franchise is certainly the hardest one to sell. You are selling your idea, and at that point, no one other than you has any reason to believe that your idea and business plan can be duplicated.

If you walk into the National Property Inspections, Inc., corporate office today, it is well-decorated, has nice furnishings, provides a professional training room, and has all the amenities we need to operate our business. We are successful, and our office shows that. Let’s turn back the clock 30 years:

Back in 1987, I had rented a small office and purchased a few furnishings. To describe the office as “Spartan frugality” would have been generous, indeed. When Clyde Yost first visited, I think I was sitting at a folding card table. For sure, I was sitting with a small electric typewriter and typing book because I was teaching myself how to type. That paid off because now I can type most three- and four-letter words without looking at the keyboard.

After Clyde and I visited about how I’d been doing inspections myself and thought the property inspection business was poised to take off, I told him I wanted to franchise it. I explained how the franchise would work, how I hoped to help him and others build an NPI business.

Clyde naturally asked, “How many franchisees do you currently have?” To which I replied, “You and two others will make three.” Clyde has a good sense of humor and thought that was sort of funny.

Clyde Yost, NPI's first franchisee, remains a franchise owner in Kansas City, Missouri.

Clyde Yost, NPI’s first franchisee, remains a franchise owner in Kansas City, Missouri.

Clyde believed in the NPI concept and became our first franchisee. Without sounding maudlin, Clyde had worked hard for his money, and I felt more than obligated to make this company successful for him, if not for myself. To this day, I try to keep all of our franchisees in mind, and I feel indebted to all of them. But I’ll admit that many of the business decisions I have made over the years I have made with Clyde and our very first meeting in mind.

Maybe there would have been an NPI without Clyde, but it certainly wouldn’t be the same. Clyde, my friend, thank you for believing in me and for everything you have done for NPI.

We have franchises available in your area. To learn more about an NPI or GPI franchise opportunity, click one of the links below:

Best Business Advice From Our Franchise Owners

Are you considering investing in a home and commercial property inspection business? National Property Inspections and Global Property Inspections offer fantastic opportunities with a top-ranked franchisor. But don’t just listen to us — here’s some practical business advice and commentary from our franchise owners.

Vaughn_JimJim Vaughn, NPI Franchise Owner, Cape Coral, Florida
“With a franchise, you do not enter a new industry alone. You have technical support, technology support, world-class training and marketing, not to mention the tools, inspection software and commercial inspection leads. If I had gone the independent route, there is no way I would have been as successful as I am in my first year. No way!

“Joining NPI was my best business decision I have ever made in my entire life. The single biggest reason that I choose NPI over the other four or five home inspection franchises that I looked at can be expressed in one word: integrity. Every single thing that NPI said I would receive, gain, do, learn and experience has come true. There is not one instance where anything has gone sideways or turned bad. It hasn’t always been easy or unchallenging, but NPI has always stood by their word and come through.”

newhook_toddTodd Newhook, GPI Franchise Owner, Markham, Ontario
“I joined the GPI team approximately eight years ago. Owning a franchise allowed me to start my inspection business within a fairly short period of time. The benefits of owning a franchise are being able to utilize the marketing program, technical support and business support provided by the franchisor from the get-go. Another benefit of owning a franchise with GPI is the friendship and comradery with the team and other inspectors, and taking advantage of learning from the top-performing franchisees to help grow our business. GPI taught me to diversify my business with additional services and build the business to a point where I could bring on additional inspectors and run the franchise like a small business. We’re now a team of four and growing. We’re excited about the future with our friends at GPI!”

yost_clydeClyde Yost, NPI Franchise Owner, Kansas City, Missouri
“The inspection field has given me the opportunity so see the interior of homes and commercial buildings that are not open to the general public, meet interesting buyers, and become knowledgeable in various styles of construction.

“I chose the franchise route for starting my business because I had a lot of experience in large commercial projects but very little knowledge in residential properties. I was also looking for help in starting a new business and not being an employee. I have had a very good experience with NPI and look forward to the annual meetings.”

If you are ready to make your dream of owning a home and commercial property inspection business come true, National Property Inspections in the United States and Global Property Inspections in Canada have franchise opportunities available in your area. Contact Julie Erickson at 1.800.333.9807, Ext. 24, for information about our franchise opportunities.

Long-time NPI Franchisee Left the Corporate World to Start His Own Business

NPI franchise owner Clyde Yost

NPI franchise owner Clyde Yost

During the early years of his career, Clyde Yost worked in engineering and technical milling for several national and international organizations. But in 1987, the year National Property Inspections was founded, he was searching for something more.

“I was tired of corporate cutbacks and layoffs and also the many days and nights away from home,” Yost said. “I wanted to be my own boss and stay away from airplanes and motels as much as possible.”

Choosing an NPI Franchise
Yost responded to an NPI ad in USA Today and then traveled from Kansas City, Mo., to visit NPI’s home office in Omaha, Neb. He met with NPI’s president and founder, Roland Bates, for about half a day. After the visit, he was impressed with Bates and went home to discuss with his family NPI and going into business for himself. They agreed that NPI sounded like a solid opportunity and said they would support Yost in his new venture. So, Yost purchased his NPI franchise in June 1987.

Yost considered starting a home inspection business independently, but realized that a franchise system could offer the support and training he needed to get his business off the ground. Today, he’s proud to be part of a franchise system.

“I felt comfortable talking with Roland and did not receive much information from any of the other inspection companies that I contacted,” Yost said. “There were not many choices in 1987.”

Franchising the NPI Way
One of the things NPI prides itself on is outstanding support for its business owners from the moment they contact us about a franchise opportunity. Yost said that the support from the corporate office and meeting with other franchise owners has provided an excellent opportunity for learning the business. “I was looking for technical help in starting a business – having a report to use on inspections and having a good name to present to prospective clients. I got all of that and more with NPI,” he said.

In 1987, Bates did a large portion of the training of new business owners himself (he still does some training with every new business owner today), and had assembled a team that also included an electrician, a plumber and an HVAC contractor to teach new business owners everything they needed to know about the property inspection business.

“There were no computers or other high-tech devices in 1987,” Yost said. “Our tools consisted of binoculars and a Polaroid camera, a screwdriver and crescent wrench. The forms were filled out at the site by hand and given to the client. The training was very good and helpful in developing my business.”

These days, NPI has two training experts on staff full time, and these employees also provide field support to NPI business owners seven days a week by telephone. The tools of the trade have improved, too, as NPI now gives its business owners a complete tablet computer and printer setup and high-tech tools such as a gas sniffer, circuit tester, infrared thermometer and moisture meter.

In addition to its training experts, NPI has a full staff ready to support its business owners, including a marketing team that includes a marketing coach and marketing manager.

“The staff has been very good to work with and has been around almost as long as I have,” Yost said. “There has never been a time when I could not find someone to answer my questions.” And often, this is Bates himself, as he remains very hands-on with NPI business owners.

Yost attends the NPI Annual Conference every November to earn inspector continuing education credits and to network with his peers, other NPI business owners. “I enjoy the annual meetings and getting together with the new members of the organization, as well as seeing the ‘old-timers’ for another session,” he said.

Success With NPI
Today, Yost has been operating his home inspection business in Kansas City, Mo. for more than 25 years. Does he have regrets about leaving the corporate world to start a business of his own with NPI?

“Never,” he said. “My experience with NPI has been great for my career and my family.”