Your home is your retreat from the outside world. When you finish a long day of work or come home after running a long list of errands, you want to be able to relax and feel completely at ease. As you prepare to list your home, you especially don’t want to have electrical problems arise. The last thing you want to do is run to your electrical panel to flip a breaker because you can’t run your dishwasher and laundry simultaneously. You also don’t want to worry about other electrical hazards.  

If you’re preparing to sell your home or hunt for a new one, there are some important considerations to make regarding the electrical system inside your house or prospective house. Some factors could make or break a sale, while others are simple fixes that can be done at either stage of the buying and selling process. 

What You Should Know About Your Home’s Electrical System 

When buying a home, you’ll have the advantage of consulting the home inspector about important electrical points. However, if you’re getting ready to sell your home, it might be wise to consult an electrician to ensure no hidden hazards before listing. Let’s outline the main points you need to know both as a home seller and as a buyer. While there might be some overlapping points, it’s helpful to take note of some critical differences.  

For Sellers

As you prepare your house to go on the market, you’ve probably thought about different ways that you can make your home look appealing to help it sell quickly. Staging a home will make it look nice, but it won’t help as much during the home inspection if there are significant structural or electrical problems. 

Upgrades to Help Your House Sell Faster

Upgrading or changing aspects of your electrical system in your home can help your houses sell faster. Updating your light fixtures is a straightforward option that will be noticeable to potential buyers. Another basic fix is to ensure all outlets and light switches are working correctly, and if not, scheduling a repair appointment before viewings happen. 

If you have an older home, we recommend that you examine three common issues before you put a listing on the market to prevent surprises later on.

  • Replace weak aluminum wiring with updated copper wiring. 
  • Install GFCI plugs in the bathrooms, kitchens, and wet bars. 
  • Upgrade older electrical panels.

Electrical Problems that May Affect Your Selling Price

If you’re planning to renovate your home before you sell, you might want to plan on upgrading the electrical systems in your home at the same time. You don’t need to do all the upgrades mentioned above, but the larger projects, such as aluminum wiring or aging electrical panels, could affect the level of offers you receive.

For Buyers

The Importance of the Home Inspection

There are lots of details to keep track of when shopping for a new home. You’ll be noticing the layout of the house, the flooring material, the kitchen design, and more. You might have a list of electrical problems in mind, but it’s hard to notice everything during a first walk-through of a home. If you’re ready to purchase a home, the home inspection will be your opportunity to find out precisely what the status of the electrical system is in the house. You’ll be informed of any existing problems and problems that could arise in the near future. 

Key Upgrades to Seek Out

When you walk through the house with your home inspector, you’ll want to take note of their feedback on electrical systems. The home inspector will let you know if there are outlets that aren’t working, circuits that are overloaded, breakers that are worn out, or if the electrical panel is an area of concern. 

What to Watch for in Older Homes

If you have your eye on an older home, there might be a few extra things to be concerned about. GFCI plugs are not always found in older homes as they weren’t required to be installed in kitchens and bathrooms until the 1970s. As you view older homes, you can check to see if the owners have upgraded the outlets. If they haven’t, this is something you could ask about or plan to do yourself once you make your purchase. 

More significant problems that might be present in older homes are insufficient circuits, aluminum wiring, or wiring that is not up to the current code. Your home inspector will alert you to anything that is not up to code so you can make an informed decision before signing a contract. 

Quick Electrical Fixes and Upgrades

While electrical problems are often found in home inspections, not all notations from the inspector require extensive repairs. Some electrical upgrades and fixes can be completed quickly and affordably. Upgrading or repairing outlets generally have a straightforward solution. Breakers that trip can be a sign that a circuit is overloaded. An experienced residential electrician can add additional circuits to distribute the power better so you can run all your machines and devices in your home. If you’re unsure about an electrical repair, reach out to your local electrician to get answers and a quote. It might be simpler than you think. 

Electrical Questions to Ask When Viewing Homes 

As you walk through homes or complete the home inspection, there are several questions you should ask to discover the status of the home’s electrical:

  • Does the electrical panel need upgrading?
  • Do all the outlets work?
  • Have the kitchen and bathroom outlets been updated? 
  • Are all the breakers correctly and clearly labeled?
  • Do the smoke detectors work?
  • Does the wiring need upgrades?

Hire a Residential Electrician in Edmonton, Alberta

Are you selling or buying a home? Do you have questions about the electrical system in your house? Consult the expert electricians at Polar Electric Contracting by getting in touch today. We can answer your questions, provide you a quote, and book an appointment so you can move one step closer to your next home. 

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