Routine for long vacant homes?

Since I am seeing more homes that have been vacant for months I would love ideas for a good routine regarding turning on the utilities and the surprises which can follow.

Thanks in advance.

Do not turn on utilities yourself and it will save you some grief.

Also run the water an extra long time on vacant properties.

Have the home properly de-winterized by someone who knows what they are doing otherwise the surprise might be a waterfall coming out of the wall/ceiling.

Send them an email confirming the appointment. In the email, stress what’s in your PIA about turning on utilities. Here’s part of what I say in the email.

"I strongly advise you to inform the listing agent or seller in writing that:

The inspector will not open gas or water valves, light pilot lights or gas appliances, activate electrical services that have been turned off, or cut locks open. All utilities must be turned on, breakers turned on, all water and fuel valves must be opened, all pilot lights lit, all rooms and crawl spaces must be unlocked, and all components such as attics and panel boxes must be accessible prior to the inspection.

Inform them of your expectations by email (and get them to confirm receipt of the email). Tell them that return visits because utilities were off, valves were off, pilot lights were not lit, or certain areas were locked or otherwise inaccessible will be subject to a fee starting at $100.00/hour ($150.00 minimum and additional travel charges may apply depending on distance)."

On, and operational.

Agreed, I had an inspection where the place was winterized and no water turned on. Just so happened that the property manager (grounds keeper) showed up and turned it on for me. Every valve in that house leaked, some worst than others. Damages were minor but bottom line is - I didn’t turn it on !! I always recommend having a plumber turn water on.