AHIT Opinion On GFCI REporting

This is directly copied from the current AHIT newsletter:

Home inspectors need to remember that they are not there to cite code violations, but rather, are there to make recommendations to the client if additional safety can be added or upgraded. For example if inspecting a bathroom in a house that was built in 1987, or for that fact 2007, and the receptacle is checked and is properly grounded but does not have GFCI protection, it should NOT be written up as a safety hazard, even though the code for GFCI protection in a bathroom went into effect in 1975. Instead, this should be expressed verbally and should be written in the report as, “for additional safety, recommend GFCI protected receptacles in the bathroom.” It is okay to recommend GFCI protected receptacles in locations that typically require them but do not currently have them.

I anticipate this post may cause a few differences of opinion…:mrgreen:


I recommend GFCIs for all the current required locations.

I have a general disclaimer explaining GFCIs and the safety enhancements they provide.

I’d assume Pete is referring to this statement.

He and ahit are right Chris.

A bare live wire is a safety hazard, the lack of a GFCI is not.

I agree. I never write lack of GFCI protection as a “hazard”. But I do recommend it at All applicable areas; and it goes in the summary.

Keep in mind the NEC is safety driven. If the NEC required GFCI protection for receptacles in bathrooms then my opinion would be it is a safety hazard to not meet the minimum standards of the National Electrical Code. Clearly a home build in the years given would require this minimum standard and minimum level of protection…A GFCI Device is a safety driven device.

I always recommend “only”
Codes are standard practice items.

There are upgrades for safer and upgrades because of being hazardous which are actually repair and replace issues.

Agreed. Especially so given the fact that the home was built under the requirement as mentioned. How could it not be a safety concern?


I do recommend lack of GFI’s as a safety issue, I just don’t include the word/phrase “hazard”.

This is part of what I typically write.

Current safety standards require them at these areas. Recommend to have a qualified electrician install GFCI’s at all applicable areas as a safety improvement.

You could also include this article in your report: http://www.nachi.org/gfci.htm

Yes this makes sense and is a good way of wording the issue.


I’ve actually printed this and given it to clients as a handout. Works well to explain the issue to them in a simple yet thorough way.


· Safety Issue: We recommend that you install a ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) outlet LOC. A GFCI outlet is a safety device that offers increased protection from shock or electrocution. They are typically required in wet areas such as bathrooms, washrooms, the outside, carports, swimming pools, saunas, and whirlpools.