First posted: Sun, Nov 25, 07
This is too late for you to use but for others reading….
When building custom, to protect both the homeowner and the electrician from surprises insist on the following and make sure it is in the contract that you will do a job site review as follows.
Before any wiring is installed the electrician will tack up every receptacle box, switch box, light fixture Jbox, recessed fixture, etc. Snap all built-in cabinet lines on the floor with chalk line accurately. He can spray the chalk with a clear sealer to make them stay put if needed. Then have a job meeting to approve everything and walk each room while comparing to the plans and notes.
This helps the homeowner by making sure things you want make it to the walls and ceiling. It is easy to move something misplaced. It is easy to add something missing. You have the chance to see if you need more of something or less. It eliminates change orders to move things already wired.
For the electrician it means he now has an approval to wire the boxes as they are and it is now very clear that if something is wrong it is not his fault.
This is very fair to both parties and well worth the few hours to inspect the job site.
It does mean that the homeowner and electrician must have done their homework but this is the entire point. If you are missing info required for this this then you should not have someone installing electrical. Homeowners tend to not understand that a tile decision they may make weeks from now may conflict with the receptacle and switches next to the sink and blame the electrician for them being in the wrong place. Extra wide door moldings are also frequently overlooked.
You can modify this if you don’t have all of the info by doing as many rooms as possible to get the electrician started while waiting for cabinet plans or whatever.
The electrician requires cabinet plans, all appliance specifications, heights of sconces, heights of receptacles and switches at counter-tops, molding dimensions if over sized, and a detailed lighting plan.