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Question DetailsAsked on 7/20/2013

Is it the home inspectors job to have the water turned on for testing the plumbing and drains?

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1 Answer


The Buyer's Realtor should schedule the inspection, but it is the homeowner's responsibility to have the property ready for inspection, including having power, water, gas etc service on if that is provided for in the contract or its standard terms. The inspector has no authoriuty to turn the water on or off because the accounts are not in his name.

That does bring up an interesting point - some real estate contracts have standard terms requiring the house be maintained in heated condition and all utilites on during the period from accepting the offer till closing, some only require it at closing, some say nothing about it and leave it up to the new owners to get utilities turned back on.

Fromthe buyer's viewpoint, a contract should require the utilities be on during the inspection and from final inspection scheduled day (usually 1 day before closing or early closing day) onward, with provisions for transfer of the account to the buyers as of closing day.

If the utilities are turned off, then on for inspection, then off again this gives the opportunity to see if any of them have problems, but if they are off at closing and then there are problems like leaky valves or rusty water after closing, you are out of luck, so utilities should all be checked for proper function at the final pre-closing inspection.

Answered 6 years ago by LCD

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