Smart Boomer Found A New Career That Marries Passions
Mike Bebault might be the most uniquely qualified home inspector in western Wisconsin.
Holding two degrees, an Associates Degree in architecture and a Bachelors Degree in environmental science –Bebault literally knows his stuff. But it’s when you combine Bebault’s knowledge with his calming, trusting demeanor that he really earns his stripes, especially with Millennials, many of whom are entering the real estate market for the first time.
“I’ve had a few youngsters refer to me as ‘Grandpa’ when their parents accompany them on a home inspection review,” the 58-year-old Bebault said. “I find it entertaining, their parents not so much.”
Bebault has been a franchisee of Pillar To Post Home Inspectors® the largest home inspection company in North America, since November 2013. He serves all of western and northern Wisconsin, east to Chippewa Falls and farther west into the St. Paul metropolitan area, if necessary.
Pillar To Post is the leader in home inspections in the U.S. and Canada, giving homebuyers or sellers a clear, unbiased evaluation of a home’s condition and answering any questions they might have to help ensure peace of mind.
Much as he performs his pinpoint home inspections from the ground up, Bebault began his career in similar fashion, earning all the tools necessary along the way. With his architecture degree in hand, Bebault first worked as a carpenter building homes, eventually moving into a 20-year career in commercial construction management.
But when the economic downturn hit in 2007, Bebault found himself downsized. That’s when he decided to return to college at UW-River Falls to earn his environmental science degree, an area that had long held his interest. Unfortunately, it was a Catch-22. “It was difficult to find a company willing to hire a middle-aged man for an entry-level position,” Bebault recalled.
Whether by fate or chance, Bebault one day found himself doing a favor for his brother by inspecting a home that he was purchasing. Bebault gave his written report to the realtor.
“She told me it was more thorough than the reports she got from the home inspector she normally used,” Bebault said. “A light bulb went off. I had always enjoyed dabbling in real estate and with my construction background I felt this could be a good fit. I joined Pillar To Post because it was so franchisee-friendly and had such a stellar reputation.”
With his architecture/construction and environmental science background affording him special insight into identifying structural and/or environmental issues within a home, Bebault’s comprehensive reports prove a valuable tool for both homebuyers and sellers.
A professional evaluation of more than 1,600 items inside and outside the home is at the core of Pillar To Post’s service. Inspectors input data and digital photos into a computerized report that is printed and presented on site. All information is provided to clients in a customized binder for easy reference, allowing homebuyers or sellers to make confident, informed decisions.
All Pillar To Post inspectors are members of regional, state, national and provincial associations across the United States and Canada, and all inspections are conducted within the Standards of Practice of those associations.
“I really enjoy working with first-time home buyers,” Bebault said. “I can put my ‘dad’ hat on and teach them about the many aspects of maintaining their biggest investment. I also enjoy helping out the busy professional or senior client who may be downsizing.”