Mandatory electrical safety inspections for rental properties. Last year the British government announced the expected introduction of mandatory Electrical Safety Certificate for private landlords. A draft of the new regulations, entitled “The Electrical Safety Standards in the Private Rented Sector (England) Regulations 2020”, was submitted to the British Parliament for approval. So what are the current laws regarding mandatory electrical safety inspections?

Electrical Safety Inspections For Rental Properties

The current mandatory electrical inspections are only required by law for houses with multiple occupancy or HMOs. And for all other private tenants, it is highly recommended to perform an EICR (Electrical Installation Condition Report) every five years, but this is not technically required by law.

What Are The New Mandatory Electrical Safety Inspections?

Mandatory landlord electrical safety certificate for rental properties have been under discussion for some time. Although many landlords are happy to follow the best electrical procedures, the new mandatory regulations will ensure that property is protected and that tenants are safe.

In 2018, the Electrical Standards working group held a consultation to discuss electrical safety in the private rental sector for the UK. In January 2019, the government published the long-awaited response to that consultation with a few key recommendations, including mandatory requirements for landlords to perform electrical checks every five years.

What Do The Mandatory Electrical Safety Inspections Mean For Landlords?

The expected regulations contain some obligations for landlords. All private landlords are required to:

  • Ensure that all electrical safety standards are met during the period that the residential buildings are occupied in accordance with the lease agreement.
  • Make sure that every electrical installation in the home is inspected and tested at regular intervals by a qualified person (“regular intervals” is every five years, unless an inspection and test report indicates earlier).
  • Ensure that the first inspection and testing are performed before the new rental period begins.
  • Ensure that the first inspection is performed before 1 April 2021 for existing lease contracts.
  • Ensure that all new lease contracts from 1 July 2020 have a satisfactory EICR.

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What Happens After The Inspection?

  • Receive an eicr report from the qualified person performing the inspection and test, with the results of the inspection and test and the date of the next one.
  • Deliver a copy of the report to any existing tenant on site within 28 days of the inspection.
  • Deliver a copy of the report to the local housing authority within 7 days of receiving a request from the authority.
  • Keep a copy of the report to give to the qualified person who will perform the next inspection and test
  • Deliver a copy of the most recent report to new tenants and to potential tenants who ask to view it.

What Does The Electrical Inspection Entail?

Conditions of electrical installation condition report (EICR), also called “periodic inspections”, must be carried out by a fully qualified and registered engineer. The main reason of the inspections are mention below:

  • Search for possible fire hazard or electric shock in the property.
  • Identify defective electrical work that has been performed.
  • Detect any lack of grounding or binding.
  • Locate any overload on electrical circuits or equipment.
  • Landlords must ensure that their inspection is carried out by a legitimate electrical engineer, since local authorities and rental agents only accept certificates issued by a qualified person.

What Happens If The Electricity Is Not Safe?

If the electrical safety certificate shows that the home is not safe, the landlord must ensure that the recommended investigation or repair work described in the report is performed by a qualified person. This work must be carried out within 28 days or within the period specified in the report, if earlier – from the date of the inspection.

Exeter Electrical Safety Certificates

The lessor must then receive written confirmation from the qualified person that this work has been carried out and the electrical safety standards have been met. This confirmation must then be provided to the tenant and the local authorities, together with a copy of the original report.

What Are The Financial Penalties For Not Having Safety Certificates?

If the relevant local authority believes that a lessor has violated the obligations laid down in the regulations, it must submit a corrective notice to the lessor, who must then perform the recommended action. Even if the local government has concluded without reasonable doubt that the private landlord has violated its obligations under the regulations, it can still impose an intention to impose a financial fine. This fine is determined by the local government but may not exceed £ 30,000.