Cost to rewire 1920 Petworth row house?

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Topic: Cost to rewire 1920 Petworth row house?

Computers and Internet December 14, 2012 at 1:33 pm

Cost to rewire 1920 Petworth row house?

I’m wondering about the cost of upgrading the wiring in my 1920 Petworth row house.  The thought of an electrical fire is keeping me up at night.  Some of the house has been rewired including the Kitchen, basement and upstairs ceiling lights, but the cloth wiring behind most of the light switches and the downstairs fixtures look original in a way that is not at all charming. 
Has anyone in POPville taken on a project like this?  Can I fix one room at a time, or do you have to do the whole house at once?  Any ideas on the cost?
Also, and electrician recommendations would be greatly appreciated!

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It will be cheaper to do the whole house at once.  Generally, here’s what most likely needs to happen:
1. Permits
2. Heavy-up (replacing feeder cable from meter to panel)
3. Install new breaker panel
4. Run new copper wire from panel to switches/receptacles/etc, opening up large areas of the walls as necessary to route the wiring (this is especially challening in petworth houses that have the wiring buried in the plaster on the brick exterior walls).
5. Replace and rewire switches, receptacles, and possibly the electrical boxes
6. Patch drywall and re-paint
For a typical petworth rowhouse you’re probably looking at 10-15k for the electrical work and another 5k or so in drywall and paint.  That’s a very rough estimate based on a full gut renovation we did in 2010.
You don’t just need an electrician for this – you need drywall guys & painters too.  And be prepared to encounter all sorts of unexpected problems as they open up the walls.
Good luck! 

Or you can get trained ferrets to carry the new wiring through the walls!  (They really do this.)

I did this most recently to an investment row home I bought in U street 3 years ago. 3200 sq/ft 3.5 stories above ground, full english basement.
I was gutting the house at the time, and the heavy up and new wiring throughout cost $11K. This didn’t include the drywall, because as I said, I gutted the place and the drywall was already a sunk cost, but doing it piecemeal you would probably spend another 3-5K on repairing the walls. 
If you try to do the electrical work piecemeal, that $11K cost would probably go to 15-17K.

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