Real estate leader to teach at WNC |

Real estate leader to teach at WNC

Courtesy WNC

Last fall, Western Nevada College became the only Nevada System of Higher Education institution to offer a Certified Home Inspection training program. Now, WNC is bringing a Northern Nevada industry leader to drive the program.

Ralph Kent Sweet, president of the Nevada Association of Certified Real Estate Inspectors and a longtime building contractor in Northern Nevada, has been hired to provide instruction for WNC’s four Home Inspection classes.

“Kent is in the inspection business and will be a great provider of knowledge and experience going forward,” said WNC Construction Instructor Robert Ford.

WNC offers the series of accelerated classes starting on Monday, Oct. 24 and continuing through Dec. 3. They prepare an individual, in part, for what is necessary to excel in the business.

“The volume of an inspector’s business typically tracks the seasonal fluctuations of the residential real estate industry,” Sweet said. “There are opportunities for dedicated individuals with the technical knowledge and small business savvy to compete in this challenging but rewarding industry.”

The Home Inspector class series starts with Certified Inspectors of Structures-Residential (CONS 260), then follows with Under Floor Inspections-Certified Inspector (CONS 261), Above Floor Inspections for Certified Inspector (CONS 262) and Supervised Residential Inspection for Certification (CONS 263). The first in the series of classes begins Oct. 24 and meets from 8 a.m. to noon Monday, Wednesday and Friday, while the ensuing three classes gather on Saturdays at 8 a.m.

Sweet brings a voluminous resume of construction experiences and knowledge to these classes.

“It’s very rare that I have run into something that I haven’t seen before,” Sweet said. “I understand the challenges that inspectors face in the field. I can help prepare students for the conditions that they are realistically going to face in the field.”

Sweet started a construction company while earning his bachelor’s from the University of Oregon in the late 1970s and has shown diversity in the business over the years. From remodeling homes, Sweet moved onto building custom homes, including multiple dwellings in Caughlin Ranch. As his company grew, Sweet focused on constructing luxury homes, as well as a Cal-Trans and FAA-approved airport. His interest in aviation — he has a pilot’s license and flies regularly — continued in the mid-1990s when he caught the attention of oil companies by improving a fuel system at Ely airport. He has also dabbled in commercial projects over the years.

Sweet still remains a licensed building contractor but decided to put his construction knowledge to work as a home inspector beginning in 2013.

“I enjoy working with homebuyers and look forward to working with individuals who want to embark on a new career, or they are retired and are looking for a second career,” said Sweet, who also is a member of the International Association of Certified Home Inspectors.

Students new to WNC can visit to apply for admission. Current or returning WNC students can register at

For more information about WNC’s Home Inspection program, contact Ford at or 775-445-3353.