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Electrical Safety Checks for Private Rented Sector become Mandatory from 1st April 2021

The Government has introduced legislative requirements from 1st June 2020 for Landlords in the Private Rented Sector in England. This will require Landlords to have electrical safety checks carried out as follows: From: 1st July 2020 all new specified tenancies will require an electrical safety check to be in place.

From: 1st April 2021 all existing specified tenancies will require an electrical safety check to be in place.

From 1st April 2021, the rules will apply to all tenancies. This means that landlords must ensure they have an Electrical Safety Check performed on the electrical installation for all their properties in England by this date, and then serve the tenants with a copy of the Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR) within 28 days. If work is recommended in the report, then it must be completed.

This means that all landlords must now do what all good landlords already do and make sure the electrical installations in their rented properties are safe.

Landlords who fail to conduct Electrical Safety Checks (and any work it recommends) before a new tenancy commences may receive financial penalty of up to £30,000.

Local authorities will be responsible for enforcing the new rules, as specified under the Housing Act 2004.

What if my property fails the checks?

If the EICR requires the landlord to undertake repairs to ensure the electrical safety of the property, then these repairs must be made by a qualified electrician within 28 days, unless the report specifies the work must be performed sooner.

The qualified person must then provide the landlord with written confirmation, either that the electrical safety standards are now met, or that further work is required. This written confirmation must then be supplied to each tenant within 28 days of the initial work being completed. It must also be provided, along with a copy of the original report to the local housing authority within 28 days of the further work.

How do I find a ‘qualified and competent person’ to carry out the test?

The Regulations require landlords to have the electrical installations in their properties inspected and tested by a person who is qualified and competent, at least every 5 years.

Guidance has been produced by the electrical safety industry that covers how landlords can choose a qualified and competent inspector and tester.

Landlords have a choice in relation to engaging a person under the electrical safety check.

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