Electrical safety in a rental property is very important because it can be a major source of fire outbreaks and serious accidents. Therefore landlords should be aware of their electrical safety obligations and comply with the law to help keep tenants safe and protect his property.
Landlords are required by law to ensure that:
- Electrical installation/system in a rented property is safe when tenants move in and are maintained in a safe condition throughout the duration of the tenancy. Examples are sockets and light fitting.
- All electrical equipment or appliances you provided are safe. Examples are cookers and kettles. We recommend removing very old or defective appliances, such as cookers from the letting. All plugs, leads and sockets should be checked for safety and correctly fused before a tenant takes possession. Where electrical appliances are included, landlords must provide tenants with safety instructions.
In order to comply with these safety requirements, we recommend that landlords conduct basic visual safety checks as part of the tenancy agreement to ensure that the electrical installation and appliances are working and safe. This way, you would be able to detect if there are broken or damaged items, such as sockets and light switches.
Landlords should also carry out a periodic electrical inspection. You must provide your tenants with a record of any electrical inspections. All appliances must be safe and checks made every 5 years. Portable devices should be PAT tested, and an electrical safety certificate issued for fixed wiring. It is also important that electricians need to be NICEIC regulated.
Portable appliance testing (PAT) is an examination of electrical appliances and equipment to identify defects that can occur. Most electrical safety defects can be detected by visual examination, however, some kinds of defects can only be discovered by testing. Even though PAT testing itself is not required by law, the Electrical Safety Council’s Guidance recommends it and the UK Health and Safety Executive along with insurance companies will expect you to have it to make sure that you are compliant with certain regulations.
If you have any concerns or queries about electrical safety in your property, please check out the Electrical Safety First website where you can download landlords’ guides to electrical safety and interim safety checklist to carry out a visual check on your rental properties.
KeyRing Lettings is a ‘not for profit’ agency, providing a comprehensive letting and management service for landlords and tenants in Mendip. Under our fully managed service, we will keep you up to date on all new legislation and legal requirements to ensure you’re fully compliant. If you’re thinking of letting your property and don’t know where to start, contact us today.