Upcoming Inspection with no power or gas

Have to inspect a house that the potential buyer has told me the gas and electric are not on. I very rarely do these type of Inspections. I was wondering if anyone had any good verbage to cya. I know basic comment and suggest re-inspection when the utility is turned on.
Thanks in advance and happy new year


Should be a short one.

Half my inspections are like this, yes it can be shorter but on the other hand your observations based on how much construction experience you have makes this inspection as consequential and important as an inspection where all the utilities are on.

These are not always shorter.

Yes frank it probably will be

Electrical service was not turned on for this inspection; therefore inspection was limited to a visual only inspection, outlets, GFCIs, AFCIs, lights, appliances etc. could not be tested. It is highly recommended to have the electrical system further inspected and tested by a licensed electrical contractor to insure you and your family’s safety when power is restored.

plesieur… yes I am aware that my experience of past construction will be helpful in making judgment on issues whether they are on or not. I have heard some test for shorts in the outlet circuits do you ever do that.?
Again thanks for input

Kramm thank you that is the type of comment I was looking to add… Cya


Thanks Kenny. I’m going to store this one for cya.


No I don’t test for shorts. I think these inspections come down to good guessing. Good guessing is an important skill and is many times better than the know it all school of thought. I use a simple disclaimer and seldom refer the buyers get a professional, eg. electrician, plumber ect. Instead I just note which utilities were off and how that limits my inspection results. Pictures with captions work best for me and especially photos of stains, discolorations, mineral deposits, burnt receptacles ect if present.

I did one recently that was easy to see needed repairs as all the radiators and supply lines to fixtures had frozen and burst, also the stone foundation needed some serious parging. Electric was off and although a new 200 amp service was recently installed the 2nd floor and attic still had knob and tube wiring which around here will need to be vacated with all new wiring to include AFCI and GFCI be installed. I think these type inspections are just as much skill and are important as ones where all the utilities are on. More traditional inspectors may have a different opinion.

Are you meaning when power is turned off… testing for a short. With power on a short would simply trip the breaker so nothing to test.

Truly amazing why buyers want to buy homes such as these. There are always reasons why any utility is off in a home. Perhaps they are looking for an unsuspecting home inspector, so the buyer can sue the inspector for the repairs. Use caution.

I did one early this Fall.
The water was off in the house because it was a Bank Owned and had been Winterized.
Water line seen blown apart.

The Electrical panel had some 15 breakers shut off.
Recommended and Electrical Contractor to evaluate the whole system after all the exposed wire connections that I saw in the basement and attic.

I don’t turn anything on. It works or it don’t. :slight_smile:

I think they are looking for a deal, kind of like buying a “mechanics special” car. Do some work and move in with equity.

I would have to say about 1/3 of my inspections are vacant homes and about half of those have all the utilities off. One this spring was a $600,000 ended up selling for $290,000 and it was a very nice house. Of course the rest are in the $30,000 to $200,000 range.

Why not just recommend they have you back for a re-inspection once power is activated. At a fee of course. I charge 1/2 the normal inspection fee for any type of re-inspection.

The ones that want someone back normally ask me to do it. The reason I it put it in my report that way is there is always electrical problems with these types of homes that need attention any way, and that’s just visual, so they might as well have everything checked out while he is there and fix those as well.

often done for gut & rehab gentrification

they already know they’ll be redoing all the elect/plmg/fixtures/appliances/windows/doors/roof…& only interested in major structural issues

i did initial on a 1950 2,600sqft & doing 7-phase of 2,000sqft add on…it’ll be 11 phases with all the incomplete work orders from the builder…he also has a $500.00 per day late completion penalty

that’s all inspections for 3~4 times above the average hi fees in this market

many clients understand the value i bring & are much smarter than many hi…ymmv


I really don’t believe this is the case. Around here its a lot to do with younger kids being able to afford thier first home. And I make damn sure they understand what it is they are buying. Some of these kids are scared as they see the condition the house is in but its a dream like we had when we were young. Yes they take some time but it’s all worth it in the end when dear old dad who is my age hahaha has the sign of relief on his face and wants your card. Here is a recent email from one.

I had one client ask me to do an inspection on a house that had no gas or electricity. But he wanted me to bring a generator to hook up to the house so I could test everything. I told him that it would be illegal for me to do that. He found another inspector that would.