How to find an underwriter?

Reply

  #1  
Old 05-03-12, 05:16 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: USA
Posts: 95
How to find an underwriter?

Hi all.

I moved my basement stairs and hired an electrician to move some wall switches and put in a sub panel. The works all done, but when he started, he asked if he should pull a permit. He pointed out that often times, they'll let you slide and work off of the building permit. He said the worst that can happen is they'll make you get an electrical permit and bring in an underwriter.

Well, the inspector said I was misinformed and that I need a permit and inspection. He also wants me to add a light to the bottom of the stairs in addition to the top.

My questions are - how do I find an underwriter? I've looked in the book under electrical inspectors and electrical underwriters, but found nothing.

Also, since I'm getting it inspected, could I just wire up the light (easy) and add a couple of needed outlets myself? Or would it be better to bring in the original electrician and have him pull the permit and bring in an underwriter?

I'm in S.E. PA. (Collegeville) in case someone knows somebody.

Thanks.
 
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 05-03-12, 05:57 AM
pcboss's Avatar
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Maryland
Posts: 14,350
My only knowledge of underwriters is that they work for insurance companies, not an inspection agency,
 
  #3  
Old 05-03-12, 06:13 AM
Group Moderator
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: WI/MN
Posts: 18,507
It was the inspector who lead you down this path, I would call him and get his opinion on what you should be doing. After all, he's the one you have to satisfy in the end anyway.
 
  #4  
Old 05-03-12, 06:34 AM
Tolyn Ironhand's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Twin Cities, MN
Posts: 11,979
The original electrician should pull the permit. No underwriter needed. You could likely add whatever you need under his permit, but he may object, so you might want to ask him. He will then call the inspector for the rough in inspection.
 
  #5  
Old 05-03-12, 08:51 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: USA
Posts: 95
Getting the contractor to pull the permit after the fact may be difficult. I'll probably end up pulling it myself.

What typically happens when the permit is pulled up front? Who inspects the work? I don't know why everybody says I need a 3rd party inspection.
 
  #6  
Old 05-03-12, 09:13 AM
SeaOn's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: USA
Posts: 351
In a nut shell: 1. If you have started and completed the rough work, and the walls where open during the rough. But you choose not to get an inspection with permit—while the walls where open. Then technically the authority having jurisdiction (Example: Electrical inspector) can make you re-open the walls to inspect the electrical [you run a risk here]. 2. If most of the work was done by fishing the cable while the walls where covered etc etc., then you could still pull a permit and have it inspected. <<<Honesty comes into play for both 1 and 2. Regardless, the permit should have been pulled before the rough work started. But, it doesn’t hurt to pull it after the rough, but the overall inspection will depend on “if” a larger portion of the electrical equipment was able to be seen before the inspection. Also, if the contractor didn’t pull a permit during the required stage, then he/or she could receive a civil fine. You may also get one<<<<this will depend on your jurisdictional law. Hint: If the contractor did you a favor by not pulling the permit, then you may not want to go telling the electrical inspector that the contractor did the work. You would have to claim all work, and technically you hold responsibility for insuring this work under your homeowners insurance.
As far as adding work to a licensed, bonded, and insured electrical contractors electrical work. You are not allowed to do this—at least not in my area—unless you pull an additional permit—>>>making you the permit holder (Owner). Side note: For insurance purposes, no sane electrical contractor would let you add to their work while they are in the process of concluding your project. Obviously you can ask the contractor to let you install some additional equipment, but I’m sure the contractor would want to inspect your work. Once they get their work inspected, and passed. Then you can do whatever you want—where it’s legal per your jurisdiction rules.
 
  #7  
Old 05-03-12, 09:53 AM
Tolyn Ironhand's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Twin Cities, MN
Posts: 11,979
I would agree with SeaOn, it would likely be easier to just pull your own permit.
 
  #8  
Old 05-03-12, 11:11 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: USA
Posts: 95
Thanks guys.

If it matters, all work was done with walls open. Walls are still open since I can't drywall till I pass the building inspection.

The only thing the inspector seemed interested in was the sub panel which is about 12' from my main panel.

So, in a nutshell, you think I should pull the permit, claim all work as my own, and pay for a 3rd party inspection? What's this about my homeowners insurance. I thought inspected was inspected no matter who did it. Will this raise my premiums?
 
  #9  
Old 05-03-12, 11:26 AM
SeaOn's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: USA
Posts: 351
If it matters, all work was done with walls open. Walls are still open since I can't drywall till I pass the building inspection.
Well, that’s good news!!

So, in a nutshell, you think I should pull the permit, claim all work as my own, and pay for a 3rd party inspection?
If the walls are still open, then have your contractor pull the permit. If you personally want to add additional electrical equipment, then you would need to pull your own permit, as the electrical contractors work does not cover your "personally installed electrical equipment" under their insurance.
Not your work. What’s this about my homeowners insurance. I thought inspected was inspected no matter who did it. Will this raise my premiums?
If you pull your own permit, then your existing homeowners insurance will cover you automatically. If you claim work others have done (not legal, but hard to prove), then your existing insurance should cover your home. But a permit “Must” be pulled to cover all work done. Your premium will only go up if you burn the place down .. Note: If the contractor does the work, then the contractor should have insurance to cover his/her work. But, if you decide not to pull a permit, then you are responsible for the contractors work, as well as your work-- as you have no legal base to say you, or he or she done the work—unless you have a permit and contract. But, now you are getting into other legal questions, and this can’t be covered here.


eidted to correct grammer
 

Last edited by SeaOn; 05-03-12 at 01:37 PM.
  #10  
Old 05-03-12, 12:17 PM
Tolyn Ironhand's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Twin Cities, MN
Posts: 11,979
You do not need to pay a 3rd party to inspect. You pay for the permit. The permit fee should cover the electrical inspectors cost. (most cases two trips) Contact your city or state to find who does the electrical inspections in your area.

As long as the work was done under a permit, and had the required inspections, you should have all your bases covered.

Note: IF your electrician pulls his own permit, and you pull you own permit, do the electrical inspector a favor and have all the rough-in work done so he can inspect it all at once. You will make him happy.
 
  #11  
Old 05-03-12, 01:36 PM
SeaOn's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: USA
Posts: 351
I’m sitting here laughing, because I noticed I like to ramble-on!!! Goodness, I almost wrote a book…….. (Ps: I love the icons)
 
  #12  
Old 05-03-12, 01:59 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: USA
Posts: 95
I appreciate the help folks.

It's a done deal now. I went and applied for the permit like nothing ever happened. The woman gave me a list of approved inspectors to call after the work is done. I didn't want to involve my original electrician since I want to do a few things on my own.

I just don't know why they charge $87 if they don't provide the inspection. Oh well...

Thanks again!
 
  #13  
Old 05-03-12, 02:33 PM
SeaOn's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: USA
Posts: 351
I just don't know why they charge $87 if they don't provide the inspection. Oh well...
So, do you have to pay the electrical inspector. Or does the permit cover the inspector?
 
  #14  
Old 05-03-12, 02:45 PM
Tolyn Ironhand's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Twin Cities, MN
Posts: 11,979
My area the permit cost covers the inspectors fee.
 
  #15  
Old 05-03-12, 02:49 PM
SeaOn's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: USA
Posts: 351
My area the permit cost covers the inspectors fee.
Same here!! Unless a small town somewhere does it different.
 
  #16  
Old 05-03-12, 05:41 PM
Tolyn Ironhand's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Twin Cities, MN
Posts: 11,979
Small towns that do not have their own electrical inspectors are covered by state inspectors. Even in the boonies, where there are no building codes, (only well and septic) it is still covered by the state electrical inspectors.

Again, around me.
 
Reply

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Display Modes
'