Wednesday 27 September 2023

The sky is fallling....and my happy dance begins!

Two posts in one day! That's a record for me, but as suggested, some clarity is in order.

The first photo was taken on Tuesday morning, as I battled with a GFCI (ground fault circuit interrupter) plug. My realtor had been told that the house inspection on Monday had identified this plug as an issue in the basement bathroom. The inspector tripped the circuit and wasn't able to get the power back on in the bathroom. They/we assumed it was the fault of the plug, so on Tuesday morning I headed over to Home Depot to buy a new plug. 

Now, before I go any further, let me tell you I am terrified of anything to do with electricity. Although I was only a small child when it happened, I remember the family story about a first cousin who was electrocuted. He was driving a road grader, hit a power line, and stepped out of the grader to identify the problem. Sadly, he died on contact with the ground. I realize that replacing an outlet or light switch is in no way equivalent but I still approach these tasks with some trepidation.

Back to the bathroom, I made sure the power was off, set up my phone's flashlight, and took the old plug out. That in itself was fun, as it had been painted over several times and removing one of the screws had me coloring the air blue. I took the plug with me to the store...because who knows if there are different kinds and sizes, right? Apparently there aren't and the plugs are pretty much standard. 

At home, I used the photos I'd taken of the old set-up to place the wires, but it would not work.  Turning to the instructions I learned there are two screws for the line and two for the load. Alrighty then - not knowing what that meant, I watched a couple of Youtube videos. The first one had four wires plus the ground, I had only two and the ground. Trying a search for two wires, I just got more confused. I tried a couple more times and still nothing. So I gave up and called an electrician. 

The young man (Will) showed up shortly after 4 p.m. and within five minutes had determined that the issue was not the GFCI plug in the bathroom, but a separate one in the furnace room next door. These were both on the same circuit, which he explained to me should not have been done. He removed the one in the furnace room, put in a regular outlet, connected the new one I'd bought, and in less than 15 minutes everything was working as it ought to have been. 

I texted my realtor to advise, and he let the buyer's realtor know, and sent a copy of the invoice as proof of the work completed. Apparently, the buyer's realtor was quite impressed with this. Did she think we'd live for another six weeks without working lights and fan in the bathroom? 

Life got a little more interesting that evening. The second photo is a picture of an issue identified by the inspector. In my living room, I have a non-structural decorative beam that has been clad with oak. At one end of the beam, the decorative cladding has come away from the ceiling. According to the agent, the inspector saw this as a safety concern as it might "fall on someone's head". Initially, I was told that the beam was loose, when in fact, it was just about 3 inches at the end of the beam. The rest of the beam is solid - my son climbed up on a ladder and tested it to be certain.

As my realtor said, if it had been his client, he would have suggested they climb on a ladder and hammer a couple of nails into it themselves, but apparently it was enough of an issue that the buyer was hesitant about the purchase. In some ways, I get it, she's a first time buyer (likely) and is taking the inspector at face value.

It was interesting seeming some of his comments in the report. Inspectors are not supposed to address cosmetic or aesthetic issues, unless it would be a safety issue. Included in the report was a comment that a lightbulb was burned out in one of the hallway lights (except there wasn't), there is a small hole in a door in the basement - it's been there since we moved in 13 years ago and doesn't affect the function of the door, and one of the basement bedroom closet doors was of the track. 

However he also noted that neither the main nor master bathroom have GFCI plugs and these should be replaced. As my realtor said, if an entire house is inspected and this is all he could find, and then you expect the seller to pay for it....  He spoke with the buyer's realtor this morning and advised I would not be replacing the regular plugs, as I'd already spent $200 to fix an issue their inspector caused.

They are, however, expecting me to fix the beam. My brother has agreed to do the work, as he has the necessary tools. Since they insist there be a receipt, he will provide one indicating "no charge, minimal repair required". 

Then I waited, and waited, and waited some more. Finally at nearly 7 p.m. the document arrived to remove the conditions and the house is officially sold! Cue the happy dance!


  1. Those little nicky picky tings can be a pain. Glad it' sold.

  2. Wow! It is all done. Can you believe it?

  3. What a three ring circus! But FINALLY your house is sold! Yippee! Congratulations, I'm doing a happy dance for you too!!!!

  4. YAY!!!!! glad that is finally done and now the move begins!

  5. Oh my gosh that was nit picky! I can’t imagine what would have been said about this old house before we bought it!! But a big congratulations to you! - Jenn

  6. Excited for you! And at least for today I can comment again.

  7. Yay! Well done! You are brave to try to repair the plug yourself. How fortunate you were to get an electrician so quickly too!

  8. Yes!!! Our son just took some money off his offer when he bought the house to fix a few things. He is slowly making his way through the list from the inspection. Saved the sellers from having to fix them and he does have his dad who will help with smaller tasks.

    God bless.

  9. So glad you are happy dancing after jumping through all the hoops:)


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