When we rented an apartment, we were shielded from the churning wheels of bureaucracy. As new homeowners, we’re surrounded by red tape at every turn.
The house we bought had several “code” violations we discovered during the inspections. We had an electrical inspector who determined that the house only had 60 amps coming into it from the outside, but 100 amps coming into the breaker box inside. So if there was an electrical problem in the house, the breakers wouldn’t work and then would catch on fire, everything would burn down and the house would be destroyed. Not what you want to happen to a new house.
We thought we’d better fix that, pronto.
We added it into the offer, that the sellers would pay for the repairs.
After we closed, we had our new friend Ron the Electrician come over and do all the electrical work. They brought the house up to code, had to pull permits with the city we live in, and change the outlets over to three-prong instead of two-prong, for our computers and TVs and such.
They pulled the electric company meter off of the house. The electricity was still on, we just weren’t paying for it.
And this is what they left instead of an electric meter:
They also left a sign on our front door:
And then we waited for the town’s electrical inspector to arrive. It took about a week, he came, looked at what they did, and said “OK, now, I’ll call the power company and have them reinstall the meter”. “You’ll call them?” I asked. “I don’t have to call them?” “No, I’ll do it” he told me, confidently.
Another week went by, and although we liked not paying the man for electricity, we were a tad nervous about the “HOT” sign on the side of our house. We didn’t want any of our wildlife friends to get electrocuted. That’s never good.
I called the town’s building inspection department and asked if they had called the power company to reinstall the meter. “WE don’t call the power company to reinstall your meter. YOU have to call them and do it.”
So, I called the power company. Yes, they assured me, we’ll send someone out. Someone came out, in his electrical workers’ car, and his hard hat.
“I don’t INSTALL the meter” he told me. “I just LOOK to see if it’s ready to install.” I guess he was just the “looker”, not the “do-er”.
About five weeks have passed since the start of this red tape unraveling. Yesterday, finally, we got our new electrical meter.
We’re officially back on the grid!