How Aluminum Wiring can affect the Sale of your Home!

Friday Apr 12th, 2019


Good news!  There is an affordable remedy!

Aluminum wiring, though not used anymore, was once considered a safe and inexpensive alternative to copper. Copper wiring is really the wiring of choice, but for a while, approximately between 1965 and 1974, copper was so expensive that everyone was looking for a way to cut costs when wiring a home. And voila, aluminum wiring was the answer. However, it didn’t take long (about a decade) to discover that aluminum wiring tended to become defective much more rapidly than copper. In fact, if left neglected, a serious fire hazard could be lurking in outlets, light switches, or fixtures, as the electrical connections cause overheating in the wiring.  Aside from the obvious danger for inhabitants of the home, this will most definately affect your re-sale value!  

Safety studies have shown that aluminum wiring in houses manufactured prior to 1972 are 55 times more likely to have a connection reach fire hazard conditions, compared to copper. So not only are you at higher risk of fire but, due to the increased fire risk, you may have a hard time finding an insurance company to provide you with home insurance!   It's remarkable how many home-owners live with this risk for decades!

As a realtor, this is something that is discussed prior to listing your house for sale.  If you suspect you may have aluminum wiring in your home, don’t panic!  Many people think they have to replace all the wiring throughout the house, but there is an alternative that is widely accepted by buyers and insurance companies:  It is surprisingly inexpensive to “safety” the outlets and connections with a process called pig-tailing.  A licensed electrician can quite easily resolve potential hazards in just a few hours without replacing all the wiring,  and provide you with a safety inspection certificate, which goes a LONG WAY in selling your house!

Speak to an electrician, if you suspect your home may have aluminum wiring, and feel free to contact me for more common household issues  (eg: ask me about  inexpensive fixes for foundation cracks!) and lets get your house ready for sale!


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