House Rewire

Rewiring a property is messy, disruptive work. It happens in two stages: first fix, when cables and wiring are installed, and second fix when everything is joined up or made ‘live’, when the front faces of sockets, switches and lights are fitted. Those runs of wires go everywhere: under floors, through walls and across ceilings, so first fix is best done without carpets or furniture, so floorboards can be lifted and ceilings cut into. To position new sockets and switches at legally correct heights, plaster generally needs to be chased into, too.

This is why it’s important to plan what’s going where in each room before starting the first fix stage, so you know where you need lights, plug points and any other electrically driven items. Additions mid-way through are costly and time consuming.

One way to prepare is by drawing a plan of your home with each room on graph paper and marking up the position of beds, sofas, kitchen units and so on. You can then consider the lighting and switches required. Little things like under-cabinet and bedside lighting are easy to do when planned from the start, but costly to undertake later. As well as thinking about task, mood and feature lighting, remember smoke and heat alarms, garden RCD safety sockets and external security lights.