Homebuyers Electrical Survey
IN THE current economic climate it is not surprising to find that people are bypassing electrical surveys and safety checks in a bid to save money.
Spanish electrical regulations recommend a domestic installation should be checked every 10 years. These are difficult times, and whilst not having a survey done before committing your hard-earned cash to a property purchase is a short-term saving, it could result in unexpected problems and legal issues. Don’t cut corners and risk your Spanish dream home becoming a Spanish nightmare.
Electrics, like everything else, deteriorate with age. Much worse are the DIY and cowboy attempts to try and adapt old properties to modern living.
Many Spanish properties have been illegally upgraded over the years. Many obsolete and dangerous sockets still exist in old properties, and it’s not uncommon to find over-rated circuit breakers in antiquated consumer units that create potential fire hazards.
Ignoring the condition of the electrical system in a Spanish property over 10 years old until after purchasing could give you an after shock.
Three essential things you need to know about a property… before you buy!!!
1. Has the property been illegally upgraded? – Properties built prior to 2002 are commonly found to have their power supply illegally upgraded. This was a common malpractice to avoid the cost of the legal process. It allows the consumer to draw unauthorised additional power. The introduction of the ICP (Interrupter Control de Potencia) together with Smart Meters will make illegal upgrades impossible.
2. Is it safe? – Properties built before 2002 are wired to antiquated Spanish electrical regulations with questionable earthing practices and dangerous socket outlets. This is a major cause for concern that increases the risk of electric shock. You need to ensure that safety improvements have been carried out.
3. Will I need a boletin? – If the property has been illegally upgraded and you do not have sufficient power, you will have to carry electrical improvements in order to obtain a boletin (Certificado de Instalacion Electrica de Baja Tension) for a legal upgrade. Or, if the existing boletin is over 20 years old you will need a new boletin before Iberdrola will grant you a contract for an electrical supply.
It’s not simply changing owner’s names on the electricity bill when you buy a property!
Our Homebuyers Electrical Survey is based upon the Electrical Installation Condition Report published by the Institute of Electrical Engineers for periodic inspection and testing adapted to the Spanish electrical wiring regulations. It covers a thorough check of the installation using specialist test instruments. The survey includes a report along with recommendations for repairs and energy saving improvements. It highlights safety issues and legal requirements – very useful information for the buyer before the actual purchase.