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  1. #1
    Joe Griffin's Avatar
    Joe Griffin Guest

    Default Winterized Homes Part 2

    Hey folks, caught the thread on winterized homes recently. About 5 of the last ten inspections this week have been winterized, partially or completely. Even if our office inquires as to the status of the property, and tells the client they will not get their "money's worth" from the inspection, we still arrive to "non" de-winterized homes.

    It is frustrating, but in this case, comedic...... Last week I arrive to the property which is vacant, and have been informed prior to arriving that the property was winterized by the owning bank. Complete winterization, no heat, water, electricity, etc.

    My M.O. is to work from the top down, so upon arriving in the basement I take a look around and note that the water meter is connected to nothing except for the incoming line from the street. It appears to have been forcefully cut at the top outgoing line, and is actually bent over. I quickly start to notice that there seems to be a shortage of copper "anything" in this basement, ie: water lines, baseboard connections, and yes, electrical wiring.

    So I turn to the listing agent and ask when the property was vandalized and the copper stripped out. He says "vandalized?" I say yes, Vandalized.
    He says, "ohhhh, I thought the utilities were kind of heavy handed when they turned this place off! This place was stripped?"

    The buyer walked.

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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Colorado Springs, CO
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    Default Re: Winterized Homes Part 2

    Damn copper thieves.

    "Baseball is like church. Many attend but few understand." Leo Durocher
    Bruce Breedlove
    www.avaloninspection.com

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Dallas, Texas
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    Default Re: Winterized Homes Part 2

    They'll be baaack... I can still see copper. After they use up the crack from that trip, they will be back to get the rest. This copper theft thing is getting worse and worse. I hear the power companies are looking at using aluminum on it's pole ground wires. I hate to think what that is going to do to new construction if aluminum is seen as the answer to theft...

    Jim Luttrall
    www.MrInspector.net
    Dallas, Texas

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
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    Rockwall Texas
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    Default Re: Winterized Homes Part 2

    Joe,

    At $3.00+ a pound, the copper theives are cleaning house you might say.

    If they are not stealing copper wiring or plumbing they are stealing the aluminum from condensing units.

    A homebuilder I know said the copper theft is what pushed him to start using PEX instead. Building out in the country as he does, they were stealing him blind.

    He doesn't even have the outside condensing unit set till almost the closing of the home.

    rick


  5. #5
    Joe Griffin's Avatar
    Joe Griffin Guest

    Default Re: Winterized Homes Part 2

    Rick, sign -o- the times. Bad signs I must say. I briefly saw a story on a man who shot two intruders and was being villified by the NAACP or Al Sharpton or Jesse Jackson for his response to protecting his property? Was it Texas?
    I saw one man being interviewed who said " I don't care what color these thieves were, they were going to get shot if they entered my home forcefully" or something like that. Good for him.

    I am not a big weapon fan, but I am a big fan of the Constitution!

    My home is full of copper, circa 1973.
    How much is a good gun these days?


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
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    Rockwall Texas
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    Default Re: Winterized Homes Part 2

    Joe,

    That was here in the Dallas area.

    Man was on the phone with police calling in a burgulary when he decided to take the law in his hand. I think he shot both of the burgulars that was breaking into his neighbors house.

    When he saw that they were leaving and the police hadn't shown up yet, he layed down the phone with the police dispatcher and next thing you hear the shots.

    Not sure if he killed them or not.

    Hey, its the wild west down here remember.

    rick


  7. #7
    Richard Rushing's Avatar
    Richard Rushing Guest

    Default Re: Winterized Homes Part 2

    Wasn't me....


    Most builders do not set the condensing units here until the last two weeks before closing anymore... Gotten pretty bad.

    RR


  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Default Re: Winterized Homes Part 2

    It doesn't look like it will get better anytime soon. With the US dollar very weak and China and India needing more and more raw materials metal prices will probably remain high. And metal thefts will continue.

    A high school football game in Canon City had to be cancelled because someone stole the wiring for the football field lights. A bold group around Colorado Springs has been using white trucks (to look like utility workers) to steal street light wiring in broad daylight. Manhole covers and aluminum park benches are also being stolen.

    People are stealing catalytic converters (for the platinum, palladium and rhodium - worth about $100 total) off parked vehicles. Back home in GA a church had the catalytic converters stolen from their bus and van.

    The scrap yards bear part of the blame for the rash of metal thefts. It should look mighty suspicious when a couple of crackheads show up wanting to sell a some park benches, a street light and several catalytic converters but they usually buy the stuff, no questions asked.

    "Baseball is like church. Many attend but few understand." Leo Durocher
    Bruce Breedlove
    www.avaloninspection.com

  9. #9
    Joshua Hardesty's Avatar
    Joshua Hardesty Guest

    Default Re: Winterized Homes Part 2

    Copper theft hasn't been TOO bad here yet, at least nothign we've put in has been stolen. But, there was a job we did recently where we installed the tubs (set them in place, ran the drains and valves) and left. Later in the week, someone not only stole the fiberglass tubs out of the house but also stole all the installed windows out of the house too. Anybody know what glass is going for these days? ???


  10. #10
    Join Date
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    Default Re: Winterized Homes Part 2

    Quote Originally Posted by Joshua Hardesty View Post
    Copper theft hasn't been TOO bad here yet . . .
    Joshua,

    Where is "here"? Your profile doesn't let us know.

    "Baseball is like church. Many attend but few understand." Leo Durocher
    Bruce Breedlove
    www.avaloninspection.com

  11. #11
    imported_John Smith's Avatar
    imported_John Smith Guest

    Default Re: Winterized Homes Part 2

    Rick, I think you are referencing the guy in the Houston area (Pasadena) that offed the two crooks. His name was Joe Horn. If you do a search on YouTube, you will see a lot of good video on it.

    I was doing a home inspection in the Pasadena area about a week after it happened. As I was walking around the house, I thought to myself, I sure hope someone doesnt take me for some kind of crook and sight up on me.

    Dont get me wrong, I think he did the right thing under the circumstances. But then again, I live in the great state of Texas.


  12. #12
    Joshua Hardesty's Avatar
    Joshua Hardesty Guest

    Default Re: Winterized Homes Part 2

    D'OH! Need to update the profile. I'm in Raleigh, NC.


  13. #13
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Garland, TX
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    605

    Default Re: Winterized Homes Part 2

    another one bit the dust yesterday

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  14. #14

    Default Re: Winterized Homes Part 2

    More about copper theft rather than "winterized" homes although I lived in the Sierras for ten years and know about that too.

    A few years back I was plumbing a three story apartment building. After having the copper on the site cut out of the walls twice, I refused to continue the job until they put a night watchman on the site. (you know, those guys that you pay to sleep on your job site rather than at home) they did. I showed up one morning about 5 AM and started walking the job to make up a parts list for the day. No watchman! Where the hell was he? I found him on the third floor in one of the units, boinking the chick from next door!! LOL I threw her off the site, threatened to call the cops if I saw her again and fired him on the spot.
    I finally got the job done and signed off. Never worked for that General again.
    Additionally, I had to pull my crews because he would not keep the job site cleaned up and I almost broke a leg trying to walk down the stairs and tripping on all the cut offs and debris piled everywhere.


  15. #15
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
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    Rockwall Texas
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    Default Re: Winterized Homes Part 2

    John,

    You are correct.

    I just saw a bit of the news story one night on local news channel and thought it was here in Dallas.

    My bad.


  16. #16
    Join Date
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    Default Re: Winterized Homes Part 2

    Unclear about the concept, part XIIVIX:

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