While examining some very fun things in a newly-finished basement (perhaps even without a permit), from behind me I heard my client's wife scream, "What the hell is this!?"
I have to say, given some of the stuff we had been looking at, she got our attention!
I turned to see her standing in front of a doorway, pointing inside.
Well, it was the electric panel box.
It looked a bit like the spaghetti special offered at the local Italian restaurant.
The cover was missing.
There was interesting wiring.
Overall it was a very dangerous thing!
I told her not to touch anything.
She asked, "Can it be in a dark closet like this?"
I said no, not only can it not be in a closet in newly-finished construction (and remodels), but it can't be in a bathroom.
Immediately behind the photo above is a full bathroom, and beside that, just under the shelf, is the washer/dryer set!
The panel box was interesting to say the least.
There were four white and black double taps (or double lugs for you idealists), holes all over the place where wires went in and out, the larger conductors had no "jelly," rust, and many breakers were wired with conductors carrying amperage too small for the breaker!
All fun, fun, fun!
I knew when we were upstairs that we were going to see some interesting stuff on this inspection. It didn't photograph well, but the new canister lights in the living room were wired one to another. Instead of burying the cables connecting them all under the drywall and protecting them with joists, they were apparently stapled directly onto the drywall and covered with joint compound, so they looked like long, little mountain ranges!
And according to my tester, when the lights were on, the mountain ranges were hot! Impressive!
The house was bought on foreclosure and "completely remodeled." And without permits for anything.
To be sure.
My recommendation: when the house says it is completely remodeled, or gorgeous inside, or must see the inside, you may want to take that with a grain of salt. And after you have your salt, you may want to take your home inspector along to have a look! You might be very glad you did.
Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC
Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.
Office (703) 330-6388 Cell (703) 585-7560