Electrical Question

Electrical system test and wiring for new house

Hello. I have just received the survey back for a house that I'd like to buy. Within the survey it says "When considering the advice of the institution of electrical engineers, the lack of a test within the last 10 years, the wiring's age and condition, and the presence of rewireable fuses, you should have the system checked and tested thoroughly before occupation and use. As this is serious, you should instruct an approved registered electrical engineer to inspect and report to you before exchange of contracts."

The surveyor goes on to say that the fuse box is dated and needs upgrading and that the number of socket outlets are inadequate for modern requirements and should be increased in number.

I'd like to know what's serious and what's not, and whether one of these tests is really serious or is the surveyor watching his own back? If I have a new fuse box, would the whole house need re-wiring? Do extra sockets need to be added?

Thanks very much.

6 Answers

Best Answer

You surveyor is trying to save you money! Over 8 out of 10 properties have some form of electrical defect! All too often people buy a house and find out once they move in that the wiring is poor or worse still in a dangerous condition, and needs to be rewired.

By far and away the best solution is to get a full electrical installation condition report carried out before you exchange contracts, as this puts you in a much better position to re-negotiate on the price, especially if you find out that the property needs a few thousand spent on it to upgrade or rewire the electrics.

A full test an inspection costs around £100 and takes about 2 - 3 hours to do. The testing will identify whether the wiring is aged and/or defective and what remedial work needs to be carried out in order to make the property safe and compliant with BS7671.

As the surveyor has rightly said this should be carried out every 10 years, so it sounds like the previous owners have neglected the house if they can not provide you with any evidence of a test ever having previously been carried out.

For more information see the links below;





Answered 13th Sep 2013

Electrical Safety Services

Member since 17 Oct 2011

hi jo
a new consumer upgrade would cost you between 200 and 300, then additional sockets you could be looking around a couple of hundred unless you want to extend the whole supply . or simple get a eicr report done and knock the work off the price off the house , ( the electricians are napit , elecsa or niceic registered ).hope this helps jeh

Answered 13th Sep 2013

jeh electrical

Member since 9 Oct 2012

Hi to find out about the general condition of the electrical installation you should get in contact with Niceic or napit registered electricians to carry out EICR- electrical installation condition report which means carrying out full 100% test of the installation to find out the condition of wiring, for any damaged sockets or switches, IP rated and gas and water service main protective bonding conductor, 17 edition fuse box all circuits should be rcd protected.

Answered 27th Nov 2016

DN Electrics

Member since 18 Nov 2016

Your surveyor is showing due diligence and if I were you I would heed their advice.

As part of the work of upgrading the existing fuse board to a 17th edition modern equivalent, the wiring in the property would be fully tested. This testing may result in existing faults with the wiring being found, or your wiring could turn out to be fine and work perfectly with the much more sensitive, RCD protected, new consumer unit. Check out www.niceic.com to find a local, registered contractor for more in depth advice.

Answered 13th Sep 2013

Sensor Electrical Services

Member since 6 Mar 2012

The choice of rewiring gives confidence that when you move into the house you know you have reliable safe wiring. Keeping existing wiring should be subject after testing to show good performance is still being given. Number of socket outlets is important as raised.having enough sockets per room allows equipment to be plugged in without permanent usage of extension leads which could create localised overloading and trip hazards.
Domestic houses should be tested every 10 years to prove system is safe for continued usage

Answered 13th Sep 2013


Member since 22 Jul 2013

Hi ,
you will know for sure if it needs rewiring only if it gets inspected, tested and your new requirements get reviewed by a qualified electrician. hope this helps

Answered 13th Sep 2013

Edris Building & Electrical Contractor

Member since 11 Mar 2013

Need help with your project?

We have tradesmen ready to help you. Post a job, read reviews and hire today.

Post a job

Need some help?

Post a job on MyBuilder to find quality, local Electricians who can help you with your project.

Search all questions