Compulsory Electrical Safety Checks for Rental Properties
This week, the Government has announced its intentions to implement mandatory Electrical Safety testing for all rental properties. This will mean every fixed electrical installation is inspected and tested at least every five years by a qualified person. We have consulted our approved contractors to find out a bit more about the process of Electrical Testing and why its necessary.
What is Electrical Safety testing?
Electrical safety testing should be carried out by a NICEIC (National Inspection Council for Electrical Installation Contracting) accredited electrician and they will carry out an inspection and then issue a report. During the inspection the accredited electrician will physically test every point, and 10% of each circuit. All socket points in the property are checked, one is taken off and analysed (just one is necessary for this as if one is faulty – they all will be).
What happens after the initial inspection?
Following the inspection, the electrician will report any observations which have been brought to their attention or which prohibit them from issuing the certificate. These areas of observation adhere to a grading system from C1-C4:
C1 (fail) – there are life threatening installations at the property and the electrician has a legal obligation to address this on site
C2 (fail) – the electrician finds something potentially dangerous that requires remedial works to be complete before it is able to pass the test
C3 (pass with recommendations) – the electrician finds nothing dangerous on site however will provide recommendations on how to make the property fully compliant
C4 – (pass) – the property is fully compliant and the electrician will enclose any minor recommendations, if there are any
What happens if I fail?
If the electrician deems there are dangerous installations at the property, they will advise on the appropriate remedial works required. We can instruct our approved contractors to complete these works as a matter of urgency and then issue the certificate once the property is fully compliant. Should a Landlord decide not to complete the recommended remedial works, then they will be issued with a fail certificate and will be prohibited from renewing or commencing any new tenancies from when the law comes in.
Why do I need it – is it law?
The government has produced a Draft Statutory Instrument outlining Electrical Testing as intended regulations. This parliamentary document is subsequent to the 2016 Housing and Planning Act which made provisions for Electrical Safety testing to become mandatory for tenanted properties. The penalty for not adhering to this legislation, when it comes into force, could lead to fines of up to £30,000.
When do I need it by?
Despite conflicting information in the media, the Draft Statutory Instrument states that this will become mandatory for all newly created tenancies and all renewed tenancies from 1st July 2020 onwards. In addition to this, they have stated with effect from 1st April 2021 this will also apply to all active tenancies throughout England.
Our advice to clients is to act now.
Parks are recommending our clients to instruct an Electrical Safety test now rather than wait until their property comes up for remarketing or renewal. The certificates are valid for five years and by commissioning the test before the law comes into force it will maximise tenant safety and allow for ample time for any remedial works to be completed, avoiding any costly void periods.
How can I sign up?
Parks offer a comprehensive Electrical Testing Service to our clients for a fixed price *subject to one fuse-board, click here for pricing. Our service includes:
- Arranging access with Tenants
- Instructing our approved contractors to attend the property for inspection
- Liaising with our clients throughout the process and reporting any findings
- Organising any remedial works that may be required prior to issuing the certificate
- Obtaining and distributing the final certificate to all parties
Instruct Parks’ Electrical Testing Service today to ensure you are covered for when the law comes in and avoid any potentially costly void periods later in the year. Don’t hesitate to contact us on 01273 202089 to find out more information or book your inspection.