When planning a new build or a major renovation, it is easy to get confused and side-tracked in the many decisions that need to be made. It is easy to forget how important the electrical wiring is, including the placement of lights, switches and plugs, and allowance for future installations or changes.
Lighting is essential in creating a welcoming space in your home. Lighting is also inspiring, functional and beautiful. Different areas of your home have different lighting needs and should be carefully planned and thought out to maximise effect and minimise cost.
How a house is wired, as well as future-proofing (planning for future electrical needs, energy usage and alternate energy sources) is one of the most important and expensive decisions in the whole renovation process.
If the wiring makes no sense, it can become frustrating. Switches and plugs that are installed without proper thought can make day-to-day life much more difficult and simple tasks can become a time-consuming chore.
So how can you make sure you get it right for your new home? Speaking to an experienced electrician is the first important step.
Lighting and electrical decisions can be exciting but also overwhelming. It is easy to get carried away and spend too much money on things that you may not need right away. Think carefully about what extras might be useful for your family and lifestyle. Dimmer switches, USB charger plugs, sensor lights, heated towel rails and LED strip lighting all have their place but don’t need to be overdone. If you are considering underfloor heating, this needs to be put in from the beginning, as putting it in later will involve ripping up tiles, adding expense.
Options such as alarms, automatic gates, surge-protection, home entertainment and data solutions can be added at a later date but laying the extra wires and conduits will never be easier and cheaper to do than when the framing, floors and ceilings are exposed and accessible. Many people are now choosing to install electric charging stations for electric vehicles. External power points and outdoor lighting are often overlooked.
Walking through your plans with an electrician before signing off on the electrical plan is a vital step to avoid wiring mistakes and unnecessary expense. Always talk to your electrician about your ideas as things are often not as expensive as first thought. Creating different moods and themes can be fun and practical when arranging your home’s lighting. Have fun and know the time you invest in planning is well spent.