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Bathroom and Panel Locations Newbie needs HELP!


stlouistage
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Hello,

I am no licensed electrician by any means but I do work with alot of low voltage systems and have enough understanding about electricity to know not to mess around with codes or the inspection process. So here is my issue. My fiance and I want to buy a house in St. Louis, MO. Upon inspection of the house we found that the owner built a full bath in the basement around the breaker panel for the house. The breaker panel is located in a closet adjacent to the shower. The closet is vented and enclosed from the rest of the bathroom. Even if this some how passes the city inspection right now, I feel this could potentially bite me in the butt later down the road. Am I putting too much thought into this or do I have a legitimate argument. I would appreciate any thoughts on this and if anyone would like to see pictures I will be happy to provide them.

Thanks Chris

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In addition to the electrical (can't have a panel in the bathroom.....well, technically, one can't have overcurrent devices/breakers in a bathroom), I have to wonder if the bsmt. bathroom has it's own issues.

Sounds like a mess of DIY. You buy it, you're buying the sellers problems.

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Chris,

I have been inspecting houses for a few years and actually bought a house that has the "panel" in the basement bath. Absolutely wrong! Didn't care and bought house regardless.

If and when I sell, I will disclose it. Moving a panel is always expensive. If youou were buying my house, I would advise you to have it changed.

I suspect one could say buyers can hold inspectors to a higher standard as regards disclosure.

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Another thought........

Several municipalities have ordinances requiring all work to have permits and inspections, or the homeowner can be held accountable for retroactive compliance repairs should those conditions be discovered.

IOW, you may be required to repair stupid stuff in the house you have nothing to do with.

Does your local municipality have that requirement?

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Thanks Les, Kurt, and RSpermo for responding to my question. I appreciate all your advice. The current resident should have gotten a permit to add a bathroom in the house since he lived in the city to answer your question Kurt. Something a little funny that made me start all this nonsense the city inspector passed the house and gave it an occupancy permit, but we called and electrical inspector who works for the city and he confirmed that it was a violation of code not only because it was in the basement but for four other reasons: 1) closet was not wide enough 2) closet was not long enough 3) multiple grounds were attached to single ground posts 4) the outlet located next to the panel was not a GFI so we attached that to our inspection rebuttal. As of right now we have requested that the panel get moved and installed to code or we will withdraw from the contract. I am a little ticked off that I spent all this money in inspections but its better than 10 years down the road having to spend money on it because of the original owners mistake. But I learned a lot about the inspection process and now it kind of intrigues me. Thanks alot guys I will be sure to stay in touch and continue to read posts.

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