What I'm Seeing Now

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The Feature List Said, "New Attic Fan ," And It Was True!

On this home inspection the feature list said, "New attic fan," and it was true!

Yep, it was TRUE, but NOT ACCURATE.

And the new unit in question?

There it is, high and center in the photo.

Brand new, right in place, apparently unused!

Well, it would have to be unused.

It isn't really hooked up.

I'm pretty sure that for the attic fan to work the wiring has to be attached to a live wire so it has electricity!

That may be in the rules, anyway.

So what's going on there?

What's that other thing hanging down?

That's the old attic fan!

The one they wanted to replace.  It' still kind of there.  Loitering.  Hanging around.  With nothing better to do with it's time.

At least it isn't on a street corner somewhere.

But wait!  Even though it's unemployed at the moment, it is ready for work!

All that wiring is still live!

And the thermostat is still hooked up!

So I had to wonder if the old fan will turn on when the temperature up there hits a certain point.

Now THAT would be cute! 

THIS IS A DISASTER READY TO HAPPEN!

Darn good thing there was a home inspection on this house or somebody would have inherited a circumstance that would have gotten really interesting had the temperature up there gotten warm.

I can't even predict what that fan would do.

What would any spinning cause that fan to do?  It's literally hanging there - would the wires get cut or come apart?  Would sparks happen?  Would it break loose and come through the ceiling below?

The professional installer  (says he with a sarcastic drip) got up on the roof, disconnected the old fan and left it hanging in the attic, installed the new fan on the roof and told the people it was all done.  Pay me.  Ba-bye.  Maybe the seller did it himself!

My recommendation:  have a home inspection!  Who knows what predator lurks out there in the real estate jungle?!  There were other electrical installations on this house just as fun, AND AS DANGEROUS, as this one.  It is amazing to me what some people want to sell to other people and have them inherit after purchase.  I fear for what goes on that is not inspected.

 

 

Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC  

Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.

Office (703) 330-6388   Cell (703) 585-7560

www.jaymarinspect.com


Comment balloon 83 commentsJay Markanich • March 12 2015 02:01AM

Comments

Jay, this is one for the text books! Wow! Some people have no pride in their work! Enjoy your day!

Posted by Wayne Martin, Real Estate Broker (Wayne M Martin) over 3 years ago

Pretty frightening Wayne.  You have to wonder about a seller who does this.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 3 years ago

I read the post looked at the photos and as I'm making my comment I'm still shaking my head in disbelief.  However pictures tell the story.  Unbelievable 

Posted by James Dray, Exceptional Agents, Outstanding Results (Fathom Realty AR LLC) over 3 years ago

Wow, that's crazy -- but not at all surprising.  The importance of having a home inspection prior to buying simply cannot be overstated.

Posted by Kat Palmiotti, The House Kat (Grand Lux Realty, 914-419-0270, kat@thehousekat.com) over 3 years ago

In the olden days, James, we did not take photos.  And people didn't believe me.

Kat - that is a very true statement!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 3 years ago

Yes, this is dumb, negligent and dangerous.  It does make you wonder how this happened and how much the homeowner knew.

Posted by Debbie Gartner, The Flooring Girl & Blog Stylist -Dynamo Marketers (The Flooring Girl) over 3 years ago

Judging from all of the things in this house Debbie, I expect the homeowner knew a lot.  I have tricks for finding things.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 3 years ago

If there were other works in evidence  in the house, I'd suspect the owner/seller to be the electrical genius.

Posted by Lenn Harley, Real Estate Broker - Virginia & Maryland (Lenn Harley, Homefinders.com, MD & VA Homes and Real Estate) over 3 years ago

That is alarming to say the least, so basically its going to start spinning with no sense of control? I would have a hard time understanding what the thought process was of the owner if they did that themselves or why they would pay somebody to perform such reckless work.  Assuming everybody thought that nobody would see it because its hidden high up in the attic.

Posted by Morgan Evans, LICENSED REAL ESTATE SALESPERSON (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 3 years ago

Top ten best ever. Lucky it was winter time and it didn't just fire up with you next to it. 

Posted by Scott Seaton Jr. Bourbonnais Kankakee IL Home Inspector, The Home Inspector With a Heart! (SLS Home Inspections-Bradley Bourbonnais Kankakee Manteno) over 3 years ago

Oh, Jay, that is one of those new wireless fans. There is a fan router in the mechanical room that controls it when the temperature hits a certain high. I've heard that retired fans have a hard time giving up and moving on. It appears that this one is in that group. 

Posted by Mike Cooper, Your Winchester, VA Real Estate Sales Pro (Cornerstone Business Group Inc) over 3 years ago

Wow. Amazing what you find when inspecting a home.  You would think the seller would have taken care of it.

Posted by Susan Jackson (America's Network Realty Group, Inc) over 3 years ago

Oh My! That is a huge safety hazard! How did the sellers not know about it? I can't imagine they would have been ok just living with a ticking time bomb like that.

Posted by Nicole Doty - Gilbert Real Estate Expert, Broker/Owner of Zion Realty ZionRealtyAZ.com (Zion Realty) over 3 years ago

I am discovering all sorts of ill-performed work from a supposed discount professional to this day who I had work on a property. Good posting

Posted by Richie Alan Naggar, agent & author (people first...then business Ran Right Realty ) over 3 years ago

You never cease to amaze with what you find during your inspections!

Posted by Stephen Weakley (Nationwide Mortgage Services) over 3 years ago

so... let's see... how would I "spin" this, as the listing agent.... ?

I know.... TWO attic fans... one brand new, the other unrestricted!

Posted by Alan May, Helping you find your way home. (Coldwell Banker Residential) over 3 years ago

 Wow - I honestly wonder how a seller could let that "loose" end just "hang" out.  In other words, as a seller, wouldn't you think to remove anything that may force you to reconsider your asking price? ...I just don't get people.

Posted by Mary Weiss, Trainer & Content Manager (Zillow Group Mortgages) over 3 years ago

The hanging fan is merely an oscillating fan... ok, an unpredictable oscillating fan.. ok, ok, a wildly unpredictable flailing oscillating fan! Voila!!

Posted by Fred Hernden, CMI, Albuquerque area Master Inspector (Superior Home Inspections - Greater Albuquerque Area) over 3 years ago

Many other works Lenn.  Could be the seller!

Morgan - maybe they were going to get back to it after lunch and still have not had that lunch?

Scott - the first thing I did when I stuck myself up there was test the wiring to see if it was hot!  And behold !  It was hot!

Mike - that box and wire hanging down are antennas?  Silly me!  So fans never retire - they hang around forever?

Susan - you would think, I would think, we would think, but they would not think...

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 3 years ago

Nicole - the house is vacant, but I don't know for how long.  Could be they left when it is cold and never had to worry about that fan firing up!

Richie - great phrase - "discount professional!"

Stephen - I never cease to amaze ME!!

Alan - like Floyd's Barber Shop in Mayberry - "Two chairs, no waiting!"

Hi Mary!  Maybe that could be called a hanging chad?  That seller forced my client to rethink a lot of things!

 

 

 

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 3 years ago

Fred - that's the kind of fan I don't want to sit behind at a football game.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 3 years ago

Cuckoo

Posted by Charles Buell, Seattle Home Inspector (Charles Buell Inspections Inc.) over 3 years ago

Yeah, Charlie, but you gotta admit - it's new!

A fan flew over the cuckoo's nest?

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 3 years ago

This is a perfect example of why I am a member of Active Rain. This had to bring a laugh when you first saw it. I know it did to me.

Posted by Bill Reddington, Destin Florida Real Estate (Re/max Southern Realty) over 3 years ago

They can't even say that it was working fine when it was originally installed

Posted by Ed Silva, Central CT Real Estate Broker Serving all equally (RE/MAX Professionals, CT 203-206-0754 ) over 3 years ago

Jay Markanich was it a DIY job? Can't believe this!

Posted by Praful Thakkar, Andover, MA: Andover Luxury Homes For Sale (LAER Realty Partners) over 3 years ago

Jay - It doesn't even look like the installer tried to make it safe.

Posted by Christine Donovan, Broker/Attorney 714-319-9751 DRE01267479 - Costa M (Donovan Blatt Realty) over 3 years ago

It actually did Bill.  And it isn't good to laugh in front of clients!

He may have said it was installed and had a thermostat so it would work automatically Ed!  All true.  As was the features list - "new attic fan."

May have been Praful!  But if so, don't advertise it!

He didn't Christine!  Maybe he's going to get to it after lunch, and that lunch hasn't happened yet.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 3 years ago

Whoa!!!  That's an awesome commercial for a Home Inspection company, for sure!

Posted by Susan Nealey, No Pressure! Ever! (Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage) over 3 years ago

What can be better than DIY?  

Posted by John Dotson, The experience to get you to the other side! (Preferred Properties of Highlands, Inc. - Highlands, NC) over 3 years ago

A crazy thing happened on the way to the attic to connect the new ceiling fan...Lol

Posted by Karen Steed, Associate Broker Haralson Realty (Tallapoosa, Bremen, Waco, Buchanan, Temple, Carrollton) over 3 years ago

You inspectors have as good or better stories than us agents. What you see could fill a book and startle a sane person. 

Posted by Dana Basiliere, Making deals "Happen" (Rossi & Riina Real Estate) over 3 years ago

That brought a chuckle to an otherwise dull morning. Thanks!

Posted by Keith Whited (RE/MAX Gateway) over 3 years ago

The amazing things you find really should be in a book. 

Your title reminded me of my first encounter with a home inspector. He obviously didn't have your expertise or work ethic, because he noted that the attic fan was working when in fact, there was NO attic fan. It nearly led to a lawsuit when summer came and the buyer discovered the lie. 

Posted by Marte Cliff, your real estate writer (Marte Cliff Copywriting) over 3 years ago

I imagine that the hanging fan did not work. Otherwise why put in a new one?

Maybe the seller did not want to get a permit to hook this new one up, or the phone rang and distracted him, or his kid was in an auto wreck, or he had a heart attack in the middle of the job, or maybe . . . etc.

Good catch on this one!

Posted by Thomas McCombs (Century 21 HomeStar) over 3 years ago

wow. the listing agent would get an earful if I noticed this. talk about the necessity of an inspector. good luck closing this sale.

Posted by Doyle Lee Austin Davison Iv, 28+ years serving Investors/Banks/Buyers/sellers (Surf City Realty 714-968-6767) over 3 years ago

Jay, I know it's not funny, but it is(!)

Thanks for the great pic and post.

Posted by Jim Harper (Atlanta Communities Real Estate ) over 3 years ago

Sorry, Jay, but you are having way too much fun. Please could you get a little bit more serious! 

Posted by Margaret Rome, Baltimore Maryland, Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome ( HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400) over 3 years ago

Well I have seen a lot of things but never the fan in the attic.  Guess the seller was blowing a lot of hot air!  

Posted by Anna Hatridge, Missouri Realtor with Goodson Realty (Goodson Realty) over 3 years ago

As an amateur forensic behaviorist, based on the photos I'll take a WAG as to the probable scenario:

New roof is being installed. Owner wants the roofer to install the new vent while he or she is "up there."

The roofer clearly states to the owner that they will install the fan but that the owner would have to call an electrician to connect the wiring. The owner assured the roofer that he or she would do so.

That would explain why the roofer, who only works on the outside, would drop the old fan. The assumption was that the owner understood what had to be done next.

Then the owner forgot about it.

What do you think?

Posted by Richard Weisser, Richard Weisser Retired Real Estate Professional (Richard Weisser Realty) over 3 years ago

Disaster ready to happen alright!

Posted by Elisa Uribe Realtor #01427070, California Homes for Sale in the East Bay (Golden Gate Sotheby's International) over 3 years ago

Unless the homeowner did it themselves I suspect they were totally ignorant that the job had not been properly done. Shame on whoever did it (of course I don't have a single roundtuit or honey-do in my house).

I understand the unintended consequences of these installations, back drafting, increased Radon levels, etc., are making them less often recommended.

Posted by Marshall Brown, BSEE, CHI (Mid America Inspection Services, LLC) over 3 years ago

Very interesting! Thanks for providing a visual. I guess it's a reminder that different people have different definitions of words.

Posted by Nathan Gesner, Broker / Property Manager (American West Realty & Management) over 3 years ago

Wow.  Just wow.  Very clearly illustrates the importance of a good home inspection.  

Posted by Julie Nikolaou (RPM Homes, LLC) over 3 years ago

Enjoyed your lighthearted commentary!  Yes, another reason to have an inspection, and another reason not to blindly trust the list of features!

Posted by Monika Boston (Adirondack Real Estate LLC) over 3 years ago

Jay, now that is scary!!!  LIVE wires in an attic?  Can you say fire waiting to happen.  GEEZ!!!!

Posted by Juli Vosmik, Scottsdale/Cave Creek, AZ real estate 480-710-0739 (Dominion Fine Properties) over 3 years ago

aaaaaaaaaaaaaahahahaha - yep, as mentioned, GREAT advertisement to use in Home Inspection Marketing!

Posted by Travis "the SOLD man" Parker; Associate Broker, email: Travis@theSOLDman.me / cell: 334-494-7846 (Team Linda Simmons, Enterprise, AL 36330) over 3 years ago

Just like when my prospective buyers ask me, "what were they thinking" I kinda chuckle and tell them, "I have no idea and you should see some of the things I've seen". It is amazing what people will do, some purely inocent and others with an agenda in mind. 

Posted by Eileen Thomas, Keeping the economy going, one property at a time! over 3 years ago

That is too funny. 

I would have started looking around for the Candid Camera crew. 

Posted by Bruce Brockmeier, Coached By Crouch (Internet Marketing Consultant to REALTORS®) over 3 years ago

That would be a fun one Susan!

John - depends on how you look at it!

Sounds like the start to a great novel Karen!  Was it a dark and stormy night?

I am startled all the time Dana!  Almost every day.

Happy to be that chuckle Keith.  I hope the morning picked up!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 3 years ago

I have thought about that often Marte.  It would be a good one.  And  I think sellable.

Hard to know Thomas.  Could be it was very noisy, but worked.  And the wiring is still hot!  It isn't new electrical so I am not sure a permit is needed.

Doyle - the listing agent got quite an addendum, for sure!

Jim - I laughed out loud, not good in front of clients!

Margaret - I have fun no matter what I am doing ... usually.  And I would do home inspections for free if I could.

 

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 3 years ago

Anna - had it been warmer outdoors that fan could have been blowing that hot air onto me!

Richard - might be all correct except there isn't a new roof, so no roofer, so no need for an electrician, and the homeowner isn't around now.

Says he with a wink...

Elisa - they say many accidents are planned.  True here!

Marshall - agree with the "they should be embarrassed" part!  And I am not a fan of attic fans, sorry for the pun.

Nathan - maybe they misremembered?  Happens a lot with people in the gubment.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 3 years ago

Wow, who would know unless you had the property inspected thoroughly, this could have been a disaster!

Posted by Geoff Grist, Author of Sold Above Market book (Mosman Neutral Bay Realty, Sydney Australia) over 3 years ago

Julie - one of many thousands of reasons!

Monika - I am very used to a list of features that is mostly fable.  I always check too!

Juli - those are okay if they're properly connected!

Travis - would make a good infomercial!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 3 years ago

Eileen - the utter creativity of people will never cease to make me wonder.

Bruce - they weren't there, but could have been, for sure.

Geoff - like I say to my clients, we don't know what we don't know.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 3 years ago

People will take all kinds of chances...a disaster waiting to hapen.

In this business, you can never say "now I've seen it all".

Thanks for the post Jay.

Posted by Dimitri Matsis-REALTOR® (818) 599-6083 (Troop Real Estate Inc. Westlake Village CA) over 3 years ago

 If it weren't so scary it would be funny. Probably lucky they did not have an electrical fire.  This is definitely one I have not seen before! 

Posted by Cat Zwicker, CRS, Down to Earth Service; Out of this World Results! (Desert Sky Real Estate, LLC) over 3 years ago

Dimitri - I got beyond thinking that a long time ago!

Cat - nor had I!  This one is both scary and funny.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 3 years ago

Wow, wouldn't have believed it, however, the photos show it all...  Thanks for the post!!  I'll share this around the office.

Posted by Jon K. Judd, GRI, e-PRO, SFR, Delaware Homes (Keller Williams Realty - Central Delaware) over 3 years ago

Definitely a disaster waiting to happen, so glad there was a home inspection on this property.

Posted by Rebecca Gaujot, Realtor®, Lewisburg WV, the go to agent for all real estate (Perry Wellington Realty, Adam Conrad, Broker) over 3 years ago

You mean it's not the attic version of a ceiling fan?

Posted by Rafi Footerman, Home Inspector, Mold Inspector, Radon and More! (Mid Jersey Inspections) over 3 years ago

Jay Markanich  Wow totally unbelievable !!!!!!  I just sold a house where a buyer refused to get a home inspection ..whew   made her sign a release for that one

Posted by Hannah Williams, Expertise NE Philadelphia & Bucks 215-953-8818 (Re/Max Eastern inc.) over 3 years ago

I can't imagine anyone who is buying a property foregoing an inspection,  yet apparently many do, don't they?

Posted by Kimo Jarrett, Pro Lifestyle Solutions (WikiWiki Realty) over 3 years ago

Jon - this is one for the books!  By the way, Jay is my nickname - my legal name is Jon.

Rebecca - this one was lurking in the attic waiting to pounce!

Rafi - that's one way of looking at it!  Woulda, coulda.

Hannah - that is common practice around here when the buyer chooses not to get one.

Kimo - my understanding is 71% get inspections, around here.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 3 years ago

Just another amazing item that we deal with. It does not make sense for anyone to not do a home inspection.

Posted by Donna & Larry Johnson, Chester & Delaware County (Keller Williams Real Estate) over 3 years ago

D&L - I agree.  You don't know what you don't know.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 3 years ago

Come on Jay, I wanna see this thing kick on! Would it circle like one of those tethered toy airplanes?

Posted by Tom Arstingstall, General Contractor, Dry Rot, Water Damage Sacramento, El Dorado County - (916) 765-5366, General Contractor, Dry Rot and Water Damage (Dry Rot and Water Damage www.tromlerconstruction.com Mobile - 916-765-5366) over 3 years ago

Jay, all I can say is.... you just can't make this stuff up!

Posted by Andrea Swiedler, Realtor, Southern Litchfield County CT (Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties) over 3 years ago

Tom - if it works I have to think it would do something like that!  It is live.

Andrea - before photos people wouldn't believe my stories.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 3 years ago

That is very shoddy workmanship. If I was the Buyer, I would have the Seller correct that as a matter of principle. Also it would make me reconsider any repairs the Seller had done.

Posted by Wayne B. Pruner, Tigard Oregon Homes for Sale, Realtor, GRI (Oregon First) over 3 years ago

And there was a LOT to reconsider in this house Wayne!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 3 years ago

Good catch, Jay.  That looks like a scary one!

Posted by Melissa Brown, Realtor - South Charlotte NC Homes for Sale (Helen Adams Realty) over 3 years ago

Thanks Melissa, but that one was hard to miss!  I did the unfortunate thing of laughing in front of my client, but told him it would make good blog fodder.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 3 years ago

I am trying to rationalize a reasonable explanation of why that situation existed in the first place...nope, can't find a good reason.

Posted by Gary L. Waters, Broker Owner, Waters Realty of Brevard, LLC, ... a small office, delivering big service! (Waters Realty of Brevard, LLC) over 3 years ago

Gary - whenever I see a 'feature list,' I always investigate it in particular!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 3 years ago

Gary I love it.  Glad you pay attention to the feature list.  Flip homes sometimes have the most problems all hid behind the glitzy repairs and upgrades.

Posted by Gene Riemenschneider, Turning Houses into Homes (Home Point Real Estate) over 3 years ago

Home Inspections are very important.  It boggles my mind that a "new attic fan" was in the listing, but yet it was not hooked up and working.  Why even bother listing it?  

Posted by Debra Peters, NY Real Estate Salesperson (Referral Realty) over 3 years ago

I was thinking it might be like one of those propeller beanies. Just put it on your head and take off!

Posted by Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS (Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate) over 3 years ago

I always do Gene.  But on flips I pay even more attention - all my antenna go up.

Debra - I would have found it anyway, but still, this is mind boggling.

Like Beany and Cecil, Carolyn?  Remember them?  Most would not.  You don't look old enough, but maybe you saw it on some kind of rerun!  Beany's propeller hat allowed him to fly.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 3 years ago

maybe it thinks it is a boat propeller out of the water? 

Posted by Lise Howe, Assoc. Broker and Attorney Licensed in DC, MD, VA, (Keller Williams Capital Properties) almost 3 years ago

If that fan turns on it will wave Lise.  There are waves in the ocean...

So you may be on to something.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 3 years ago

Jay, imagine the lady of the house all alone, and that fall come on.  What does she think?  What does she do?

 

There is someone in my attic, they are tearig the place apart...

 

"9-1-1 Operator, what is your emergency?"

Posted by Fred Cope, Looking For Homes With A Smile (Reliant Realty in Nashville, TN) almost 3 years ago

I would LOVE to be a fly on the wall listening to that phone call, Fred!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 3 years ago

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