Representative number?

Hi I’m a new guy. I have a question about some of the language like a “representative number”. I was wondering what is considered a repesentative number of windows, receptacles etc…?

25% - 1/3 - One per room

It’s left up to interpretation. I would say if you can safely get to it then inspect it.:slight_smile:

I agree with James. Hit as many as you can , it really doesn’t take that much longer.

I usually try to check all accessible moving components like windows and doors.
I accessible I check a minimum of 1 outlet per wall of a room.
and all light switches.

I check all that are accessible. If the home is vacant, I check every receptacle, window and switch. If the home is occupied, I check all that I can get to without moving furniture or other items. I inspected a home last week that had so much stuff piled up that in some rooms, I didn’t check a single receptacle.

Thanks, I was wondering about that. It all sounds like good advice depending on circumstances like accessibility, or 25% of the receptacles, or if the house is empty.

I check all windows,doors,outlets.

I also check all accessible windows and receptacles.

Yep, if accessible, it gets checked.

All that is accessible without moving furniture or belongings and I do not unplug something in the receptacle to check it. :slight_smile:

The SOP’s in Kansas where reviewed and pretty much written by Jeff Barnes. A committee wrote them, but Mr. Barnes had final say so. I believe the attorney general needs to approve them, but this is how “they” define representitive number:

**“Representative Number”
**means a sufficient number to serve as a typical or characteristic example of the item(s) inspected. For multiple identical interior components such as windows and electric outlet receptacles, it means one such component per room.

So, here in Kansas, Toto, a $99 inspection will result, if you only have to check one per room. This does not protect the consumer; at least in Kansas. Just venting.

I usually get to 80-90%+ of all receptacles and 95%+ of opening windows.** Being thorough** keeps the complaints down and the referrals up.

Last inspection was for a lawyer…Although it could not be smelled in the air, found that there was petroleum product under the basement slab from a furnace oil spill next door. Opened a sealed ABS plumbing cleanout that did not appear to be for building drain purposes…smelled a petroleum odour.

As this house was an estate sale without a property condition disclosure document and could not confirm anything with executor of the estate, checked with folks next door who told me they had had the oil spill!!! House is now in a period of extension of inspection conditions while the buyers investigate the cleanup of the spill to see that professionals were used and some type of clearance documents exist from the insurance companies or our Dept. of Environment.

BTW, the buyer’s realtor was new to me and quite nervous that I would break the sale on some trivial issues…apparently I’m now at the top of her list since she had never seen or heard about one of my inspections before.


Check everything that you can check without moving personal items, and without putting yourself in an unsafe situation. I know a real estate agent that had to purchase a door for a buyer because the inspector he used for the job did not check them all and this one was warped. Didn’t get put into the report and the buyer was not happy. Could have understood it had the home been occupied, but it was vacant. Later when speaking to the agent I also found out that the inspector was not NACHI, and that it took him approximately 1 1/2 hours to inspect the entire 4000 sq. ft. home. It is bad that it happened, but the agent learned a valuable lesson.

Our state HI law defines this as “one per room” (i.e., one recepticle, window, switch, door, etc).

I always operate and test as many as are accessable.

Hope this helps;

The IL SOP, currently, does not make any mention of representative number. (If I missed it, please show me)

The proposed changes to the SOP, I believe do address this, but as of now, it is not in there.

Regardless of how any jurisdiction defines it:
If it’s accessible, inspect it.

It’s for that reason that I check all doors, windows, and outlets that are accessible. I’ve had those size homes with one or two outlets miswired and sampling could miss it.

Sure the door wasn’t the only thing missed. And price shoppers question why my price is $100 more than some of my competitors.:roll:

“Random (Representative) Sampling” was removed from the State of Texas, mandated SOP as of 1 September 2007. The intention was that random (representative) sampling was not an acceptable practice.

I will move small furniture and will remove a plug as long as I can see it’s not serving a computer/router or other serious item such as a power bar serving an entertainment center.

As for the 1 receptacle and window per room…that’s for the “1 hour special” inspector.

A few years back I was inspecting a house for the new commander of a ship (Halifax is the east coast base for our Navy). The first and easiest receptacle was just right of the entry to the large living room. It checked OK but the next 3 were dead.