Simon`s Snippets - What The New Electrical Safety Proposals mean To You

Date Published 21 April 2020

In this two-minute read, we discover why landlords need to get serious about electrical safety.

After years in the pipeline, new electrical safety standards for private rental properties are expected to come into force on July 1.

The legislation is likely to get the green light in the House of Commons and the House of Lords in the coming weeks.

What will the new rules mean?

Currently, landlords are obligated to keep the electrics in their properties in good working order, but there are no hard and fast rules about exactly how and when they do this. After July 1 this is likely to change. Every fixed electrical installation in a rental property will need to be inspected and tested by a qualified electrician every five years.

This inspection process will generate what's called an Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR). Get used to hearing this acronym. We will be required to give each tenant a copy of the property's EICR at the beginning of a tenancy.

The local authority will also have the right to ask to see a copy of the EICR – a request we must comply with within seven days. In addition to, we won't be able to move people into your property unless we can provide them with one too.

What if an inspection reveals a problem?

Any issue must be remedied within 28 days – or sooner, if it's a more serious fault. The work needs to be done by a qualified person, and you need the paperwork to prove it's been done to a high standard.

What if a landlord fails to comply?

Breach these new regulations, and you could be hit with a fine of up to £30,000. It's also worth noting that local authorities will have the power to carry out repair works themselves – and then pass the costs, along with a hefty fine, onto you.

We are able to liaise with both contractor and tenant to have this important certification resolved for you and to make sure you stay on the right side of the law.

When does it come into place?

The new rules are expected to come into effect on July 1, 2020. Any new tenancy or renewal after this date will require an electrical inspection and report (EICR).

For pre-existing tenancies, we have until April 1, 2021, to get an EICR.

If you'd like more advice about this new legislation contact myself at swillson@totallettings.com