Cost of a rewire?

6 Jun 2007
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United Kingdom
It's a how long is a piece of string question...

... I am buying a house that I am pretty certain will need a rewire (old bakelite switches etc) and I am fairly certain this will come up on the survey.
It's a large 2 bed mid terrace property. No plug sockets will need moving but a couple of ceiling lights will need to be repositioned and I would like a couple of lockable outside sockets.

I am in South East Kent - anyone have any idea of a ball-park figure?

Any advice very welcome!
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Didn't realize it wasn't allowed.

Never having had a re-wire done, and not knowing any electricians I am at the mercy of the yellow pages - I was just hoping for some idea so I don't get ripped off.

Once again sorry.
Hence the reason for getting a number of quotes and asking friends/relatives for recommendations.

Let's just say, it'll be more than 1k but less than 4k (probably ;)).
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You could ask local companies how much they charge per point, how much for consumer unit change and earth bonding. How much for test and inspection with certificate and how much for notification?

Each point is counted, i.e. a light fitting has a point for the luminaire and a point for the switch, if two way it has three points, etc.

How much per hour to put right anything unforseen at estimate, picked up during the job.

That should cover it.

Some people hide their charges, my price for a new consumer unit and earth bonding is inclusive, i.e includes the necessary inspection and testing certificates and notification, but not fault finding if inspection and test failed. That is charged per hour at an agreed rate in advance.

Some people charge less for the job and so appear cheaper, but then stick on inspection and test and certificate and notification as hidden charges afterwards. It's a bit like solicitors quoting £50 per hour, but then charging in addition for opening every letter, writing a letter etc. Or accountants charging a fee then adding on charges for "registering you with inland revenue £100" you know a few presses of keyboard and there's another £100 in the bin.
Electrical installations are invasive- otherwise known as 'house bashing'- for a full rewire you will have some chasing and fabric damage to route the cables.

A sensible plan would be to consider all invasive works in one metaphorical pot. So if your going down the rewire route, will you do plumbing works, TV cables, Data cables and telephone works at the same time?

Will you provide a open house for 2-4 weeks when all such work can be done without furniture, carpet, flooring issues or issues with having to do bits of work and reinstate flooring etc for each evening when you arrive home (for safety, need to use services and your living comfort).

Will you employ a plasterer to make good or would that be the sparks / trades making good there own fabric damage.

The cleaner the sweep of work the quicker it is for the trades person doing the work, the cheaper it would be for you.

On a terrace such as the one your buying, I'd look at:-

Ring / radial for kitchen- 4-6 double sockets
Radial for cooker
Ring / radial for ground floor, hall, 2 reception rooms 4 double sockets in each
Ring / radial for 1st floor 2 beds, 3 double sockets in each room + hallway + bathroom shaver point
Lights- ground floor, hall, front porch, 2 receptions, kitchen.
Lights-1st floor, 2 beds, bathroom, WC if separate, loft.
Radial for immersion heater, radial for CH system.

So your looking at 7 final circuits, 20+ double sockets, 12 light positions and 12 light switches. Subject to type of sockets, metal ones are 100% more than white MK you'd be looking at a number between 2 and 4 with a few zero's on the end.

Add on TV, data, voice, door bell, earth bonding and a number between 3 and 5 would be more appropriate.
As said by others, the best thing that you can do is to get several quotes from local sparks, especially recommended ones.

To get quotes that are easy to compare you will need to have a specification in place before they come to see you, thihs means that you will be getting puotes for exactly the same things.

You will need to think about-
numbers, types & positions of accesories,
type of central heating,
smoke alarms,
security alarm,
door bell,
shower (electric? how powerful? who to do plumbing)
oven (gas, electric or dual fuel)
gas fires (electric supplies for ignitors)
outdoor lighing
outdoor sockets

and all the things previously mentioned - especially clean/empty house & who to plaster
Thanks for all the tips.

It is a bit of a minefield for me as I have only ever used an electrician once and he was pretty damn awful (he came recommended too!)

I have written down what I want with regards to lights, sockets etc. I have a full gas cooker so if I understand what little I have read correctly I only need a normal socket for that to plug into. Haven't got/not having elctric shower. I do plan to have an outside socket to the front and the back, and a light to the front and the back.

Am I being unrealistic in thinking in an empty house (no furniture or people) it could be done in ten days?

Thanks again!
A standard sized empty house, and standard amount of points, we usually turn it around in between 3 - 5 days including plastering.
We = me and an apprentice doing about 7 hours actual graft a day (8 hours on site)
Where in the UK are you? Prices vary across the UK

Building regs differ also.

a rewire can cost from £1700 - £3500 or more (if lots of spots)

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