The other day a realtor call to set up an home inspection and when my wife, who runs our office ask him if the utilities where on, he came back and said no and ask doesn’t the inspector brings a generator to hook up power. My wife said no but I was wondering if anybody out there does this or have had it ask of them to do this. Thanks

Don’t do it.

I usually tell members to do whatever it takes (and charge for it). In this case though, don’t do it. Don’t bring a generator to the home. Too many issues. You’d have to make sure not to backfeed the line, you’d have to make sure the power wasn’t returned during the inspection (and now you have to hook it back up live)… no way. Forgettaboutit.

I agree , Not a good idea.

It is a terrible idea! Just suppose something gets damaged, the house burns down, you name it. Whether you caused or not by connecting up a generator, you will have hell to pay defending yourself proving you did not cause it. The old thing about, “It was fine until you did _____________.”

Same reason not to turn on breakers, gas, water, light pilot lights, flush toilets that have been winterized, etc. You have to remember the first cardinal rule. YOU are an Inspector, you inspect. You should not have to provide the utilities in addition to doing the inspection. That is the sellers and their Reps’ responsibilities. That is the way it is written in every Realtors’ contract I have ever read. Many, ,many times I have found homes without the utilities being turned on only to find out later there was a legitimate reason for it being OFF but no sort of WARNING for anyone coming to inspect or look at the house. If anyone ask you to go beyond normal procedures refuse to do it. I have had investors ask me if I knew how to override thermostats so they could see if the HVAC unit is working. My standard answer is “Yes, but I am not going to do it and if you do it, it is your responsibility if something breaks, burns up or becomes a problem.” Using normal operating controls is there for a reason.

And truthfully, it does not matter what everybody else or just anybody else does. You should establish you own protocols, make them hard and fast rules and do not deviate from them.

I should note, there are some types of inspections that require this as well as other services but those are NOT home inspections as we know or describe them. A couple of guys here do a load of HUD type inspections that require them to do this sort of thing but you are operating under different rules, protocols and protections. It is important to know what your liabilities are before taking on anything like that. I am sure some of them will weigh in here on those kinds of inspections. I do not do them so I do not know all the nuances of their processes.

Ken - Oh my goodness NO. That is a new one!

Actually, it isn’t.
A few years back, I was contacted about doing HUD inspections. They wanted me to carry a generator and a portable water supply as none of the homes had water or electric.
I passed.

As to the question, no.
Usually, the real estate contract states that the home must be in an inspect-able condition with all utilities on and operating.

Tell the Realtor to bring the generator. After all, isn’t it his responsibility to have the power on? Oh, and let him hook it up!!

Wow… NOOOOOO. Thats a good one though!

These guys do. They must be great…:—):—):—)

Thanks for the reply. I know better then to do that, but if the agent ask me then maybe there are inspectors out there that may considered doing it and I just wanted to bring it to your attention. Just the other day I had an agent call for an inspection and when I ask if the utilities where on and he said no and thought that it was our responsibility to call and have them turn on. It just seems that a lot of these agent don’t have a clue of what’s going on out there and these brokers should teach them how the proper way to set up an inspection.

I wonder if it is a crime to by-pass a disconnected electrical service?:wink:
Wonder what FPL would say?

I did an inspection and the meter was tampered with to turn the electric on. I laughed because the builder actually did it. I think they forgot to have the power turned on and just pulled the meter and put it back in.

Actually when the power company turns off the power they typically put what is called a block on the meter. It is only plastic covers on th prongs on the back of the meter. Not hard to take off, seen it done alot. Would not recommend an inspector doing it or even if you buy a house and the power isn’t on…

They usually do that here also. But this meter was also rotated and did not make contact.

They usually have a small wire lock tab on those so you would be breaking the law when you cut them to remove the metal ring holding collar.
Tampering and theft of services come to mind.

In FLorida you also have to be a licensed electrician.

I don’t rink an inspector should ever do it…and if you own a house and evict a tenant and the power was shut of that you do it, but it is pretty easy. Im not sure about the theft part as the electric is metered so your not really stealing. Not that I have ever done it on my own properties.

I have seen that as well John

If you bypass the meter, you are stealing. I know someone that it happened to. He was going to lose the house and didn’t pay the electric bill. FPL came out and removed the meter. He took some jumper cables and had power. FPL caught him. I don;t know what happened as he left town!

Some guys do some funny ****…electrician I knew had 2 meters and would change it out right before meter reading day. Don’t know what happened to him either,lol