When to rewire your rental property

A house that has safe electrical wiring is crucial for rental properties, HMOs, and buy to let properties. However, it can be hard to know when you need a rewire for your property. Because rewiring are such large jobs, they definitely don’t need to be done often, but knowing when one is appropriate is very important for property managers. The right planning in these areas can also help avoid expensive call-outs.

These are some suggestions of signs that you need an electrical rewire for your property, with explanations of why these are issues to be concerned about. These are easy to spot when renovating a house, but may have to be reported to you by tenants for HMO properties – it’s very important that you don’t ignore these signs, as damage could be being done to your property without you knowing about it, and it may not be safe for tenants.

An older property or cabling

The first feature is more of a general warning than something specific to watch out for. If the property you own or have purchased is an older property (older than forty years from new build), the chances of faulty wiring is much higher. The wiring will often be the same age of the property, unless whoever you have purchased it from has stated otherwise. For property that is over forty years old, the wires in the property may be suffering from degradation. This means that they could fail at a moment’s notice. By replacing your wiring with new wiring that complies to modern safety standards, you not only ensure that you are safe, but your electrical rewire can help you when you come to resell the property.


Sparkling outlets

Sometimes outlets in a property can spark – don’t be too alarmed if you see this once. However, if this happens routinely, or you notice a large spark when using a plug socket, you may need to be aware of the possible long-term implications. This can be a sign of a potentially large problem for the future. If your outlets are short-circuiting, this means that heat is building up within the outlet which can cause melted insulation. When exposed, this could lead to electrical fires, which can be dangerous for the appliances in use, your property, and isn’t safe for those living in the property. 


Fuses that are blowing regularly

Our increased dependency on modern technology, technology uses a lot of electricity, can be an issue for older properties. The older style of fuses that are installed are often not designed for all of the appliances being used in your home, sometime collectively at one time (as is very common within a HMO property), this can major issues. If your fuses are blowing regularly, they may need to be upgraded to modern circuit breakers, and the wiring around the property may need to be updated.


Flickering or dimming lights

If your lights are regularly flickering or often starting to be dimmer than you are used to them being, this is a common sign that your home needs a rewiring service completed by a trained electrician. In terms of the effects that flickering or dimming are highlighting, bright lights are being subjected to too much voltage, dim lights are receiving too little voltage.

You may have replaced a few bulbs, believing that the lights or the bulbs are the issues, but not managed to correct the issue. This is a common problem. These spikes or declines in power are a symptom of faulty circuitry, loose wiring, or electrical wiring issues that are often caused by corrosion.

You have a lot of extension cords for your appliances

If you are having to use electrical extensions in order to power the appliances you have around your property, then you need to install additional power outlets. This can be done during an electrical rewire. Whilst extension cords can be cumbersome and difficult, they are also dangerous for your property, as too many will overload sockets and cause fires or damage to wiring.


If you want to know more about HMOs in general, and the specifics of electrical rewires and making sure a property is safe, or property advice, then make sure to have a look at the impressive range of Nick Fox books. We have loads of great books about property development, property rental, and HMO rentals.


Nick Fox started his property investment career 10 years ago and his portfolio has grown to one of the largest in the UK. Nick now mainly focuses on HMOs (houses in multiple occupation) and works to help others achieve property success too. Visit here to find out how he can help you.

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