Do you ask the home buyer to turn on the utility first before the inspection?
I ask my client to take all of the necessary steps to ensure that all utilities are on.
As agreed to in my pre-inspection agreement, if I arrive and the utilities are not on, I perform my inspection and my report disclaims all plumbing, electrical and mechanical as applicable. For an additional fee, I will return and inspect the items that were not energized during the first inspection when the utilities are on.
I ask them to try, and tell themif they are not on, i will not turn them on and i will not be able to accurately assess those areas of the dwelling.
Wording in my agreements state that it is the clients responsibility to ensure the utilities are on. I also check with the realtor to confirm that the utilities are on.
If I get to the inspection and find out there are utilities off, I give the clients the option.
- Reschedule the inspection, $150 trip fee.
- Continue on with the inspection, option to return when the disconnected utility is off $150 return fee. (Not an option if multiple utilities are off)
I have done inspections where the water is off at the time of inspection, and the clients agrees to continue with the inspection. They are made fully aware that the plumbing system will be deffered to the need for a certified plumber to fully evaluate the system before continuing with the purchase of the house.
I do no inspections without all utilities on. They can call the cheap guys to inspect when utilities are turned off. I do not want the added liability if I forget something. And we are all human and forget things at times.
So you dont do any inspections on forclosed properties.
Around here and im sure in many parts of the country as soon as you hear the property is bank owned you can almost guarantee there is no copper left in the building therefore no water.
So John, you are the “cheap guy” in your area?
I tell them to.
Maybe 50% accomplish the task.
I send out a letter to the selling agent to pass on to the seller. We hardly ever see foreclosed property’s so it not a huge issue. My letter explains the inspection process and what are limitations are. Like not moving a closet full of stuff to get to the attic access. It still happens once in a while.
Here’s the letter. Feel free to use it.
Add in Winterized homes for no water, and that would eliminate 50% to 75% of my annual business if I refused to inspect without all utilities on! :shock:
Agree, as it should be. I follow this same procedure. Always have, always will.
I note this in my PIA as well.
Where needed, I confirm & remind prior to appointment as well.
Expectations are set with the client at time of booking. When the contract is sent off, the email states that all utilities must be on to the final fixtures. The client is aware that it is their responsibility to make whatever arrangements necessary with their agent or the listing agent to ensure the utilities are fully activated.
Maybe once or twice it has not been done. Inspection was performed and a return visit scheduled at half the original inspection fee to inspect those items not completed the first time.