One of the most popular questions I get asked is
"How do I get started?"
So I've decided to write down a few items you need to take care of before I can come wire up your home.
** This guide does not really apply to anyone buying a home "turn-key", as your general contractor will handle a lot of this stuff for you. **
Please keep in mind that this guide is just to give you some general information. Your general contractor or electrician will be able to answer any questions you may have and can help you through this process.
Set up an account with the Power Company:
The first thing you need to do is get power to the house, that means setting up an account with your local Power Company.
I'll use Central Maine Power as an example, because I deal with them most often.
Their phone number is 1 (800) 750-4000.
You need the following information to give to the power company:
- Current Mailing Address & Phone Number
(So they know where to send the bill)
- The Address of the Property that needs Power
(So they know where to deliver the power)
- Your Social Security #
(as verification of your identity should you call about your bill)
- Size of the Electrical Service Panel
(100 Amp, 200 Amp, etc)
- Location of the wires
(Overhead or Underground).
The Power Company will then send you several forms:
- State Permit
(only required for temporaries and/or commercial properties - duplexes or larger, condominiums, motels, restaurants, etc.):
This permit must be completed by your electrician (Coastal Contractors).
There is a minimum charge of $50 from the state.
There is a minimum charge of $300 for temporary services from the Power Company.
- Form 1190/Sub-Division form):
This form needs to be signed by the town code enforcement office and mailed or faxed back to the Power Company.
- Form 1360/Certificate of Electrical Inspection
(only required for new services on residential properties):
This form needs to be signed by your electrician (Coastal Contractors), or your Town Electrical Inspector (if the town has one).
Now that you have your Central Maine Power account set up and your home is being built it is time to get your service located.
You will have to call the power company. They will ask for your account number, type of service (overhead or underground), size of service (100 or 200 amp).
Now they will ask you where the service should be located.
The location of the service on the house is the distance to the power pole, and the accessibility for the meter readers, usually on the driveway end of the house. The power company will work with you as much as possible to find a satisfactory location.
Keep in mind that the power company can not run their overhead lines more than 150 feet. If it looks like additional poles will have to be set, get the process going as soon as possible as it can take a considerable amount of time.
Your general contractor or Coastal Contractors can help you through this process.
Pricing and laying out your electrical:
If you do not have an electrical plan you can use a copy of your floor plan. Mark the location of any of the following that apply to your house:
- Outlets Switches, Dimmers Interior Lighting Fixtures
- Ceiling Fixtures, Recessed Lighting, etc.
- Wall Fixtures, Sconces, etc.
- Closet Lighting
- Under Cabinet Lighting
- Paddle Fans
- Exterior Lighting Fixtures
- Entry Lights
- Spot Lights
- Motion Detectors
- Dusk-till-Dawn Lights
- Garage Lighting
- Telephone Jacks
- Television Jacks
- Computer Networking (CAT5) Jacks
- Security System Panel
- Home Entertainment
- Intercom Systems
- Carbon Monoxide (CO2) Detectors
- Surge Suppressor
- Generator System
Mark anything else that you can think of.
The more information you can give your contractor, the closer they can get to the actual cost of the project.
We realize it is hard to visualize the exact location of switches, outlets and lighting fixtures on a flat floor plan. Coastal Contractors would be happy to meet with you and mark the location of switches and outlets on the actual framing (studs) of the house.
Although there are electrical codes we must adhere to, there are still plenty of choices for you to make. Don't forget to tell us what type and color of switches and outlets you'd like to have!
I hope this information has been helpful to you!
All of us here at Coastal Contractors wish you the best for your future projects.
If we can answer any questions for you, please don't hesitate to ask!