Thursday, 5 March 2020
Electrical and gas safety in privately rented properties
The new Electrical Safety Standards in the Private Rented Sector Regulations 2020 were made on 18 March and will apply to all new tenancies on 1 July 2020 and for existing tenancies on 1 April 2021.
The Electrical Safety Regulations will require landlords to:
- Have the electrical installations in their properties inspected and tested by a person who is qualified and competent, at least every five years
- Provide a copy of the report (known as the Electrical Safety Condition Report or EICR) to their tenants, and to the local authority if requested
- If the EICR requires investigative or remedial works, landlords will have to carry this out.
The Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998 require landlords to have annual gas safety check on each appliance and flue carried out by engineer registered with the Gas Safe Register and to keep a record of each safety check. Further advice can be found on the Gas Safe Register’s website at Gas Safe Register.
Both regulations are clear on the issue of compliance
If a landlord can show they have taken all reasonable steps to comply with their duty under the regulations, they are not in breach of the duty. With regards to the Electrical Safety Regulations a landlord would not be in breach of the duty to comply with a remedial notice and with regards to the Gas Safety Regulations a landlord would not be liable for an offence.
A landlord would be well advised to show reasonable steps by keeping copies of all communications they have had with their tenants and with electricians as they tried to arrange the work, including any replies that they may receive. Landlords may also want to provide other evidence they have that the installation, appliance or flue is in a good condition whilst attempting to arrange works.
If you require support ahead of the new rules coming into practice, please contact your local lettings team:
Atherstone – 01827 718021
Rugby – 01788 564666
Daventry – 01327 316880
Northampton – 01604 823456