JohnT your are correct in that cost is an issue in this application. This is on the youngest son's house. So he has two kids and money is limited right now. Also the house in question is older and very well could be replaced not far down the road. So do not want to go hog wild to only have to redo it in a few years down the road.
I will enact the "Don't ask and do not tell" rule on how he has been doing it. LOL
This is why I wanted an economical way to correct his current way of doing it. Plus I have an extra 7500 watt gas generator that has electric start. It is one out of a RV so it does not have any wheels or anything. So it is just setting not being used. So I am thinking a little enclosure for weather protection plus a box and switch interlock set up, his wife could make it work safely if he was not home.
Thinking a small metal box/shed 20-30 feet away from the house. A good heavy cord hard wired to the generator. So all you would need to do would be open the enclosure. Hook the cord to the house box. Start the generator. Then go to the main breaker box and flip the main off and the generator breaker on. Interlock to make sure you do it correctly. Flip off all the breakers you don't need and you should be good to go.
I think it would be a cheap but safe setup and is what I am trying to help him get.
PS the generator is setup for propane. So Away from the house would allow me to tie it into the propane tank much easier.
OK guys pick this apart so I can see what I need to change. LOL