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DIY enthusiasts warned not to attempt unsafe work amid cost-of-living crisis

More than a fifth (21%) of people admit they would complete home repairs themselves that are legally required to be carried out or checked by a registered tradesperson, according to a survey.

Direct Line business insurance released the findings as it warned that completing certain gas and electrical work, such as fitting a new cooker, fuse box or circuits, must by law be carried out or checked by a registered electrician or Gas Safe registered engineer.

Completing work that does not comply with building regulations is a criminal offence, it said, as well as the risk of being sued in the civil courts if injury or damage is caused.

Homeowners with uncertified installations could also face problems further down the line, as not having the necessary paperwork could become an issue when selling a property, resulting in delays, extra expense or work needing to be redone.

More than two-fifths (42%) of people said they carry out DIY work at home themselves, the survey of 2,000 people across the UK in September found.

But some said they had been injured or made a problem worse by trying to tackle it themselves.

Alison Traboulsi, product manager at Direct Line business insurance said: “Trade based skills are a crucial part of the UK economy.

“As the cost-of-living crisis worsens, it’s understandable that people may look to cut costs where possible, such as carrying out home improvements themselves. However, for safety reasons, some home improvement projects involving gas and electrics must be completed or checked by a registered professional.

“During difficult times, it’s important that people still look for professionals to do complex work rather than breaking the law or compromising their own health and finances.

“For those worried about cost, it’s always worth seeing if you could negotiate on price and it’s sensible to compare quotes from a few contractors, and check reviews online for service quality.”