LANDLORD ELECTRICAL SAFETY - YOUR LEGAL OBLIGATIONS
Regularly testing the electrics in your properties is a legal requirement. Read on to better understand your responsibilities and key landlord safety checks
What is required of a landlord?
- Landlords must make sure a professional electrical safety check is done prior to the commmencment of any tenancy. It must be carried out by a competent person (a Part P qualified electrician in kitchens and bathrooms) to ensure that the elecricity supply, and all the appliances, are safe and legal
- Failure to comply with this landlord electrical safety law may constitute a criminal offence under the Consumer Protectino Act 1987 that carries a maximum penalty on summary conviction of a £5,000 fine and/or a six months imprisonment
What is a PAT test?
- The Electrical Equipment (Safety) Regulations state that all electrical appliances supplied with let accommodation must be safe. This applies to both new and second-hand appliances and covers all the electrical items supplied for the intended use of the tenant. The regulations also ccover fixed appliances such as cookers etc.
- The only method of ensuring that all these appliances are safe is to have them tested by a trained electrical engineer using the Portable Appliance Testing equipment, known as a PAT test
How often does a landlord have to do an electrical safety check
- Electrical safety checks must be legally done prior to commencment of any new tenancy
- It is advisable to arrange an electrical safety inspection manually
- It is worth arranging an Enhanced Electrical Inspection or ‘E2’ which includes electrical appliances and equipment too
Do landlords require a specific electrical testing certificate
- The law states that landlords must have an Elecrical Installation Condition (EIC) Report before a new tenant moves in
- Make sure to ask your electrician for all new certificates and reports completed during any insprections and testing and file them safely away
- The kind of certification report you receive depends on the type and extent of testing
- Electrical Installation Certificates (EICs) and Minor Electrical Installation Works Certificates (MEIWCs) provide landlords with proof that any new installations, alterations or additions are safe to use at the time they are put into service
- In the event of a claim that injury or fire was caused by an elecrical installation, these certificates are documentary evidence which will help show that the installation had been installed to a satisfactory standard of safety
How much will the testing and certificates cost?
- Costs vary depending on the type and extend of testing as well as the electrician you use
- A typical EIC Report for an average three bedroom house costs between £100 and £250 and should take up to four hours to complete