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Forums » Rehabbing and House Flipping » electrical inspector is stalking me

electrical inspector is stalking me

14 posts by 11 users


· Illinois

inspector showed up 1 day & got red tagged, with a stop order, for no permit (my fault). we applied for the permit & 2 days later, i called the inspector to apologize & when would the permit be ready as my renters want to move in march 2nd but i said i can't until everything passes. he said it was fine, he spoke to my licensed electrician, & signed off for the permit. i asked if i could pick it up. he asked for my ph# & said he'd call me back.

i then called the village clerk to ask about the status. she said, "it's here. come pay for it & pick it up."

left and got it. went to the house & posted it on the window.

I'm in my car, in front of the house, talking to a neighbor. all of a sudden the electrical inspector drives by slowly. he passes the house & goes 2 doors down, pulls into driveway, stops, pauses, reverses, & drives by us again. I waved but he just looked straight and ignored me.

I'm confused as to what his purpose was of driving by? any idea? perhaps he was just making sure permit was posted in the window or that we hadnt started the work before i got the permit? he's been a super nice guy otherwise and helpful.

Real Estate Investor · Springfield, Missouri

Checked to see if you were in compliance with the order and posting requirements, he was probably looking for the permit, saw it and went on......nothing to be paranoid about.... :)

Financexaminer@real estate investor dot com

Real Estate Investor · Michigan

These government "workers" have nothing better to do than waste time with drive by's instead of doing anything productive. You can only sit at your desk trying to look busy for so long before you need to get out of the office.

I wouldn't sweat it.

Wholesaler · Baltimore, Maryland

@Scott W. I have nothing of value to add but your title made me laugh!

Small_crab1_copyNed Carey, Crab Properties LLC

Real Estate Investor · New York

Originally posted by Ned Carey:
Scott W. I have nothing of value to add but your title made me laugh!

yeah I thought it was 'shocking'

my run in was
- because of the extent of the rehab I had to get a yet another permit 'to install required smoke/co2 detectors throughout'.
- inspector recommended a lic elect (first red flag)
- young lic elect shows up & didn't seem to know much about
inter connected smoke CO detectors &/or just lacked interest ???
- told me to climb into attic (he was too large) & pull the wiring
so he could do the connections on the 2nd floor.
- $600 later everything gets approved & then find out the lic elect recommended was a relative of the inspector.

Real Estate Investor · Charlotte, North Carolina

Had an inspector tell my contractor he was being hard on us because all we were going to do was sell the house for was our first house in a particular neighborhood and he had just been rehired so he was on a mission. It's all cleared up now but man for that first one he was tough.

· Lakewood, Ohio

@Jim M. story is similar to mine. I've had inspectors scold us for "trying to make a quick buck". But, after the first home, I've always won them over by doing good work and improving the neighborhood.

I've had inspectors stop by (and drive by) randomly many times. Sometimes to verify permit is posted. Other times just to "see how it is going". One time I had an inspector check in to "make sure work was being done so the home wont stay vacant forever"

I would not get too nervous about the inspector driving by.

· Illinois

he failed me on the rough. my unlicensed electrician did fire alarm hard wire based upon 2008 NEC code (village goes by 2011). I can understand why he failed me.

What I can't understand is the inspector was leaving, looked at the recepticles (they were trash before..painted over...chipped prongs) & says, "that's gonna fail too." why? "i'm not gonna tell you. have your electrician read the 2011 NEC code."

This is BY FAR the nicest looking house on the block...maybe in the area. But NOOO, he made take them all out & put in childproof (tamper resistant) recipticles.

Again, I can see the 1st but why can't you tell me what needs to be done? Isn't that why an inspector is paid?

Real Estate Investor · Buffalo, New York

Some of them get on "power trips" just because they can. Dont get me wrong, I have probably dealt with more good inspectors then bad, but theres always that 1 or 2 who got beat up too much as kids in school.

Real Estate Investor · Audubon, Pennsylvania

Originally posted by Scott W.:

What I can't understand is the inspector was leaving, looked at the recepticles (they were trash before..painted over...chipped prongs) & says, "that's gonna fail too." why? "i'm not gonna tell you. have your electrician read the 2011 NEC code."

This is BY FAR the nicest looking house on the block...maybe in the area. But NOOO, he made take them all out & put in childproof (tamper resistant) recipticles.


Now, child-proof is 2011 code. Did all of those receptacle boxes have 3 conductor wiring (with ground wires)? If not, might be another FAIL if you used 3-prong receptacles.

Steve Babiak, Redeeming Properties, LLC
Telephone: 6109082183

Real Estate Investor · New York

also make sure the ground 'prong hole' is @ 12 oclock.

Rehabber · Pearland, Texas

Originally posted by Pat L.:
also make sure the ground 'prong hole' is @ 12 oclock.

Is that new to 2011 code?

Real Estate Investor · New York

According to my Inspector if the plug is slightly unplugged & something falls down on it, it will only hit the ground prong not the two live ones.
Fortunately or by luck we had all the new ones in correctly except one.
I noted during the rehab we are doing now all the new GFI's are aligned that way as well!!!.

A lot of building inspectors in Illinois have considerable power. It maybe difficult to envision due to the bad rep we have in Chicago, but in my opinion the building inspectors in the suburbs are much more "stern" or "strict" than in Chicago itself. In some properties that are in very bad shape (as a lot are these days), some inspectors can rush to judgement and require all of a particular thing be redone (all electrical/plumbing) even if it may not need to be, or demand a gut rehab at most extreme.

In some towns, for example in Maywood, the Village has the right before any property transaction to inspect a property for deficiencies and require that the buyer put up a bond and a guarantee and all that jazz, to fix those problems with in a few months of the closing. This is absolutely ridiculous because what if someone (like myself or a handyman) wanted to come in and fix up a property slowly? What if I was was a homeowner without a lot of cash, and I wanted to buy a fixer upper to work on on the weekends? No option. Plus, the fixes were all predetermined by the Village. In this situation imagine the considerable power and sway a building inspector may have over any particular transaction?

I had to let this particular Maywood deal go because of all the red tape. it was just too frustrating. It was disappointing because apparently Derek Rose grew up a few blocks away.

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