From today, mandatory electrical safety checks will be required for all tenancies and licences to occupy: both new tenancies and now all existing ones.
In basic terms, an Electrical Installation Condition Report (‘EICR’) will need to be issued by an electrician after carrying out an inspection and either declare the tenanted property safe or highlight any required repairs.
In full compliance with the Electrical Safety Standards in the Private Rented Sector (England) Regulations 2020 (the ‘Regulations’), landlords of privately rented accommodation must actually:
• Ensure national standards for electrical safety are met within their properties (published as British Standard 7671 in the 18th edition of the Wiring Regulations).
• Ensure the electrical installations in their rented properties are inspected and tested by a qualified and competent person at least every 5 years.
• Obtain a report from the person conducting the inspection and test which gives the results and sets a date for the next inspection and test (known as an EICR).
o Supply a copy of the EICR to the existing tenant within 28 days of the inspection and test.
o Supply a copy of the EICR to a new tenant before they occupy the property.
o Supply a copy of the EICR to any prospective tenant within 28 days of receiving a request for it.
o Supply the local authority with a copy of the EICR within 7 days of receiving a request for a copy.
o Retain a copy of the EICR to give to the inspector and tester who will undertake the next inspection and test.
• Where the EICR shows that remedial or further investigative work is necessary, complete the work within 28 days or any shorter period if specified as necessary in the EICR.
• Supply written confirmation of the completion of the remedial works from the electrician to the tenant and the local authority within 28 days of completion of the works.
It is worth noting that a satisfactory EICR will not need to be replaced for five years, unless an earlier date is specified on it.
You should also note that the Regulations do not cover electrical appliances. However, it is considered good sector practice that landlords regularly carry out portable appliance testing (‘PAT’) on any electrical appliance they provide with their properties. Of course, tenants are responsible for making sure that any of their own electrical appliances are safe.
For all your tenancy-related needs, Landlord Support can help with practical advice and representation on a fixed-fee basis, including free initial case reviews. See www.landlord-support.co.uk for more detail.