Relocating Utility Meters

By November 14, 2019 Managing a Renovation

Picture the scene; you’ve designed a lovely new layout which will work perfectly as long as you can move the electricity or gas meter. Your building contractor tells you it ‘can’t be done’. Your neighbour says they got it done for £500 cash in hand. What’s the truth?…

Gas & Electricity

The likely truth is that it can be done, but for more than £500 and not by the building contractor. Different parts of the supply/ meter equipment are owned by different companies. These parties usually need to be involved in the process of moving it;

  • The supply is owned by the “Distribution Network Officer”. E.g. the Electricity DNO in London & Brighton is UK Power Networks, and the Gas DNO is Cadent (London) / SGN (Brighton).
  • The meter is owned by the company you pay for your electricity/ gas.
Source: UK Power Networks – ownership of different elements of your electricity supply.

Moving the meter usually involves the DNO moving the supply. The fee and timeline for this will vary considerably. It depends on the amount of excavation required and the length of new pipework/ cabling required. You should be able get an indicative quote and timeline online.

Very occasionally, the meter can be moved without moving the supply, and your qualified electrician/ plumber may be able to do this.

A general contractor should never do this – the work is potentially dangerous.

Be sure to ask your contractor/ plumber/ engineer if they are allowed to do the work and then certify it afterwards. It is not in their interest to do work that is not permitted: as well as the danger they can be fined considerably.

Newly relocated Electricity supply & meter
Newly relocated electricity supply installed by UKPN with cabling in a channel prepared by building contractor
Trench for new mains water supply. The mains pipe needs to be a safe distance from all the other pipes & cables in the trench. Tricky!

Water

The simplest rule with water is to assume if you are making any change to the way water comes into, or leaves your house, then you need to involve the water supplier (e.g. Thames Water/ Southern Water). 

This includes adding a new bathroom and connecting to your existing soil stack. At the very least the water supplier will need to approve the work carried out by your plumber – but they may need to lay new pipework themselves connecting to the mains or mains sewer. Since that could require various permissions to dig up the road, this can be a lengthy process.

We have experience working with Utility providers to design and implement changes, so if you are considering a renovation, get in touch!