Electrician backed for selling cheap home pinball machine to building inspector


Members of a popular internet forum have shown their support for a freelance electrician who refused to let a miserly homeowner get away with a house full of shoddy connections.

In a viral Reddit post posted to r/MaliciousCompliance, Redditor u/big-heck-nah (otherwise known as the original poster, or OP) said they were asked to rewire an entire house before being dropped for a cheaper option, but revealed how they ended up in the house with a less than impressed electrical inspector.

Titled “You want me to force an inspector after someone else does the job?” the post has received nearly 14,000 upvotes since September 18.

“One day I got a call from a new client,” OP began. “He was one of those people who turn over houses in working-class neighborhoods.”

Continuing to explain that they were unimpressed with the owner’s attitude and delays, the original poster described the newly purchased home as a total disaster and said she had no interest in taking on the project.

The original poster also stated that after their high estimate was rejected in favor of an electrician willing to rewire the house at a lower price, they were again contacted by the owner.

“[He] called me later that year [and] explained that he found an electrician in three states and paid the electrician with ceramic tiles instead of cash,” OP wrote. “The problem now? Well, he needed an inspection from the city electrical inspector.

“I got home about twenty minutes before the inspector showed up and saw a lot of issues,” OP continued. “Every problem I saw, the inspector saw it too. He pointed them out, and each time I agreed with him that the work was not up to code.

“I finally explained to the inspector that I hadn’t done any work and had been hired to pass the inspection…he asked me if I thought he should and I told him ‘absolutely not,'” OP added. . “I was paid for my time…to fix all the violations, and I’ve built a solid relationship with this inspector.”

With U.S. inflation rates at their highest in 40 years and the cost of gas and groceries putting extreme pressure on bank accounts across the country, skimping in other areas can be attractive.

Cheap electrical work, however, is usually indicative of poor electrical work.

The cost of rewiring a tiny house ranges between $1,500 and $3,000, according to Home Guide.

For an average-sized home, that range goes from $3,500 to $8,000, and for larger homes, homeowners can expect to pay anywhere from $8,000 to $20,000 for a full rewiring.

In the United States, electrical problems account for 51,000 fires, 500 deaths, 1,400 injuries and $1.3 billion in damages annually, according to the Electrical Safety Foundation International.

Due to the inherent risk – both physical and financial – of poor quality wiring, it is imperative that homeowners hire licensed and reputable contractors to ensure that all work is done perfectly and up to code.

Electrician hands. Members of Reddit’s r/MaliciousCompliance forum have rallied around a freelance electrician who refused to sway an electrical inspector into approving a poorly wired home.
alexeyrumyantsev/iStock/Getty Images Plus

Throughout the comments section of the viral Reddit post, many Redditors echoed that sentiment and praised the original poster for prioritizing safety over quick money.

“Ethics,” wrote Redditor u/The_Next_Story in the main comment to the post, which received nearly 4,000 upvotes. “Invaluable.”

“Thank you for not trying to encourage them to pass it anyway,” added Redditor u/Ryugi. “That’s literally how people die, you know?”

Redditor u/Mr_Awesome1919, whose comment received nearly 1,500 upvotes, said he was also an electrician and detailed the financial pitfalls of cutting costs at work.

“Here, electrician,” they wrote. “Sometimes my potential customers think my prices are too high. It’s completely understandable.

“You should always shop around,” they continued. “But if someone isn’t qualified to do the job, it will cost me a lot more to come back and fix it.”

Newsweek contacted u/big-heck-nah for comment.



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