Employing electricians Electricians: know the rules
This article, Employing electricians, was last updated on 11 November 2009 and is now out of date and held in our online archive for reference. Explore our latest Home & garden articles.
To make sure that electrical jobs are safe there are standards they have to comply with. If you can't prove they comply with these rules you may find it difficult to sell your house.
In England and Wales these rules are called Part P and are part of the building regulations.
Electricians need to be be Part P registered before they can do many electrical jobs. If you don’t use a Part P registered electrician for these jobs you will have to pay your local authority building control to inspect the work.
To check an electrician is Part P registered go to the register of competent persons for electricians.
DIY electrical jobs
If you do undertake riskier jobs yourself you have to inform your local council before you start work and then have the work assessed once it’s done.
Some minor jobs don't need to be carried out by certified electricians or inspected, so provided you have the necessary skill you could do them yourself.
These jobs include replacing light fittings anywhere or adding new plug sockets or switches, provided they aren't outdoors or in rooms where water is present, such as a kitchen or bathroom.
Rules for electricians in Scotland and Northern Ireland
In Scotland, for many electrical jobs you need to apply for a warrant from your local council before you start and you then submit a certificate once the work is complete that the council accepts or rejects.
If you use an Approved Certifier, such as one from Select, they can provide you with a document to submit with your certificate saying the work complies with the standards.
As with England and Wales the rules don't apply to all electrical jobs, so if you’re unsure check with your local council.
In Northern Ireland there are currently no equivalent rules that cover electricians.