Electrical certificates

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  • Electrical certificates

    My letting agent contacted me at the end of last year to say that new regulations had come in requiring all landlords to have an electrical safety certificate covering the wiring, fuse box etc and likened to it as the same as a gas safety certificate. I gave the go ahead for the work to be done, but have subsequently found out from the NAEA that there is no mandatory reason for this certificate - only that it's adviseable to have it. I already have the appliances checked annually. What are other landlords being informed please?

  • #2
    At the moment, you are under no legal obligation to have such electrical checks carried out. It is advised that you do so though.

    Gas checks are a different matter though, you are required by law to have all gas appliances checked annually.

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    • #3
      The question of electrical certs came up on a legal forum the outcome of which was that not having one leaves you liable for electrical safety and potentially liable to prosecution should some there be an electrical accident. This can be as simple as an earth strap missing from under the bath and someone get electrocuted. Modern properties with plastic plumbing can be even worse and this is where the 'Newer' P Compliance regs and guidelines came in. Regards Peter

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      • #4
        As with most things to do with renting its a case of establishing the type of property you have before anybody tells you the wrong information.

        The only mandatory requirement for a valid electrical certificate is for a HMO, i.e bedsit, shared house, etc. This requirement doesn't include certain converted blocks of flats.

        However having said that, it could also be asked for by a local authority if they are implementing selective and additional licensing under the Housing Act 2004, parts 2 & 3 in your area and making it a licence condition.

        Legally you have a duty of care to your tenants, how you go about establishing your duty of care is up to you.

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        • #5
          I have seen quite a few agents that require you to have an electrical periodic safety check done for this reason or they will not represent you; they are protecting your interests by requiring you to do so; unfortunately this reassurance comes at a price.
          All posts in good faith, but do not rely on them

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Bel View Post
            I have seen quite a few agents that require you to have an electrical periodic safety check done for this reason or they will not represent you; they are protecting your interests by requiring you to do so; unfortunately this reassurance comes at a price.
            I'm sure that's the case... the trouble is that some of them are being a bit naughty by saying that the check needs doing for regulatory reasons rather than because their agency has a policy of insisting they are carried out. There is a clear difference!

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            • #7
              Electrical certificates

              Many thanks to all that answered my query on this subject. I agree that as a landlord I have a duty of care to my tenants and it's in my own interest to safeguard them. I just wish that the letting agent had been honest with me from the start instead of claiming that a new regulation had come in. I have been renting out for 4 years so why the delay in insisting that this work needs to be done?

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              • #8
                Originally posted by diddled View Post
                I have been renting out for 4 years so why the delay in insisting that this work needs to be done?
                New policy I expect... regulations have been and continue to be tightened in almost every aspect of letting property, so in that respect it's not particularly surprising. Plus the rules have changed considerably for HMO (Homes of Multiple Occupation) very recently - and I think that included electrical certification? - which also may have prompted it.

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                • #9
                  Article 6(3)(a) of the The Management of Houses in Multiple Occupation (England) Regulations 2006 states that:
                  The manager must-
                  ensure that every fixed electrical installation is inspected and tested at intervals not exceeding five years by a person qualified to undertake such inspection and testing

                  So, for an HMO (whether or not it requires a licence) that's your legal obligation.

                  If your HMO requires a licence, beware of local authorities who try to insert this as a licence condition and specify shorter timescales or try to define what counts as 'qualified'. Testing of the electrical installation is not a mandatory licence requirement. Testing of the gas supply and appliances by a CORGI registered engineer is a mandatory licence requirement.

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