Ensuring that your tenants are electrically safe should be your main priority when letting your house out. The government have now put in regulations that state you need to have a periodic electrical test on the property by a professional electrician. Landlords now have the duty to keep their tenants safe. Failure to provide the electrical testing could result in prosecution and it cancels most insurance policies that landlords have.
From 1st July 2020, landlords will need an Electrical Installation Report before a new tenancy commences. As a landlord it’s your legal responsibility to make sure all electrical apparatus in the property you let out through the entire occupancy. This duty includes plugs, light fixtures and internal lighting.
An electrical equipment installation entails all electrical equipment that is provided through your properties electrical meter. Like other areas in the property, electrical installations within the property suffer depreciation and can before dangerous if not treated. Therefore, it’s crucial that you have the house electrically tested.
The professional electrician that will provide your electrical testing will produce an Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR). This report will tell you either that all electrical installations met the required standards and regulations set or they will tell the landlord that they need another investigation or electrical repair work within 28 days of the test. The report will also outline when the next test should be carried out. These checks should be carried out every 5 years or sooner if the report tells you. The tenants they must receive a copy of the EICR within 28 days of the electrical testing inspection.
When does an Electrical Test have to be done by?
For tenants that move into your property on or after 1st June 2020, the EICR must be completed before they start their tenancy. A potential landlord must provide a copy of the EICR before you move in. For tenants that are moved into your property before 1st June 2020, the landlord must carry out an EICR before the 1st April 2021.
What will the report show?
If the testing fails, the electrician that completes the electrical testing will use classification codes to show where the landlord must carry out remedial work.
- Code 1 – Danger is Present (This code tells the electrician that there is severe danger present, this is most likely to tended to by the electrician carrying out the test.)
- Code 2 – Possible Danger Present
- Further Investigation (FI) – Additional assessments are needed without interruption.
- Code 3 – Improvements Suggested (further changes is not needed for the EICR to be passed)
Your landlord will need to ask a professional electrician to provide a portable appliance (PAT) testing for any electrical equipment the tenants have in the property e.g. kettles, toasters and washing machines. The expert electrician will thoroughly test the electrical appliances in the property and place a sticker on the plugs when the appliance was tested and when the next PAT test is needed. Portable appliance testing isn’t a direct requirement, however, it’s useful to have because it will cover you if something did go wrong with the electrics.