HA annual gas service - 10 months or 12?

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    HA annual gas service - 10 months or 12?

    My mum and dad's house is rented and owned by the local housing association. They want to do an electrical safety test. Does anyone know what this entails? it's a normal semi detached (3 bedrooms, bathroom upstairs, kitchen, dining room, living room, hall downstairs) I think the electricity on a loop circuit? Will they want to test appliances as well as the sockets etc and do they test the light switches as well as sockets. Also what happens if a socket is out of reach ( they have a fitted wardrobe which can't be moved). Will they need a large space for the testing equipment or is it small? I'd really appreciate any info I can pass on as mum is a bit stressed. Thanks

    It's usually a test of all permanent electrical systems (ie they unplug everything first) to a standard called BS7671 (2008).

    You need a qualified electrician ("competent person"), who will spend several hours checking everything with various bits of kit and meters - no large space required - and will give you a 3-4 page certificate stating how good it is ("satisfactory") etc, explaining what they have done and recommending any works which must be done, or are advisable to have done.

    They will *not* test your portable appliances unless you have asked them for a "PAT Test" (Portable Appliance Test) as well, or instead.

    The system is the responsibility of your LL, and the appliances usually of your parents.

    If you have your own Electrical Check done it will cost from about £100 to £200.

    HOWEVER, if it is a Local Authority property, they *should* have these done regularly - if they keep up to the requirements they usually demand to recognise a "good landlord" in the private sector (<raises eyebrows>) - so the place to start is by asking if they have done so, to request a copy of the latest certificate, and ask for one to be done if there hasn't been one done recently.

    You should probably be concerned if there has not been a test in the last 3-5 years.

    As a quicker check, you can ask for a visit from the EHO and perhaps mention "HHSRS" (Housing Health and Safety Rating System) and that you are concerned about the Electrics, or have a "visual" check from an electrician, for which you will not get a certificate, but it will highlight obvious problems and cost you less money if they will do it.

    EHOs are not usually qualified electrically, but they have big boots and are often willing to tread on the feet of landlords if they find something.

    If you LL is dragging their feet, you could try getting a visual check with a brief report to use as ammo to get them to do a full check.


    Refer Mad Regulators to Arkell vs Pressdram.


      In addition to what ML's already said....

      There are different types and levels of test, so we can't be sure what will be done, but my guess is that it will be a Periodic Inspection Report.

      This involves one bloke with just a toolbox and a shoebox-sized testing unit, and who will need access to every room where there's power.

      He'll spend most of his time scrabbling around in the consumer unit or fuse box, as that's where all the circuits start and finish; but normally he'll want to unscrew a number of electrical accessories (that's plug sockets, light switches, light fittings etc) to check the innards. They usually do a percentage of the whole, as a spot check; the number they do probably depends on how good or bad their findings are.


        And since you are T, DON'T authorise any repairs (except to appliances you supplied), even by mistake or by forgetting to tell E that you aren't authorised to do that :-).

        Refer Mad Regulators to Arkell vs Pressdram.


          Does LL (housing Assosiation) have to supply appointments in writing?

          This might not be right category so apologises. Does a LL have to supply it in writing if they want something doing in the house? My parents HA want to do a test but they only sent a letter with a proposed date and no time. We have been trying to find the time out for over two weeks and was told they couldn't tell us until nearer the time! We wanted to specify a morning appointment. They told us over the phone on 29/3/11 (test is on friday 1st april) that it's an afternoon appointment. Can we refuse the appointment because they haven't supplied info in writing? Thanks


            What's the "something"; and is L under a Letting Agreement obligation to do it?
            JEFFREY SHAW, solicitor [and Topic Expert], Nether Edge Law*
            1. Public advice is believed accurate, but I accept no legal responsibility except to direct-paying private clients.
            2. Telephone advice: see http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=34638.
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              You can refuse (or agree) the appointment regardless of whether you're told about it in writing or not.

              However, if you are persistently obstructive to LL gaining access for necessary repairs or inspections, then it is possible that the LL will take legal action to enforce access and it's possible the T may be liable for the LL's legal costs.

              It is important to be reasonable, so I suggest you write to LL offering a number of alternative appointment times/dates (keep copy letter and obtain a free certificate of posting).


                It's an electrics test but as I say we have been trying to find out the time of the appointment for over two weeks and they only told us on tuesday it's an afternoon appointment. We requested a morning appointment but they won't change it.


                  Unfortunately we are all at the mercy of trades ppl. It's completely normal to be given an all day appointment so a bonus that you've been made aware that it is an afternoon appointment.

                  If the appointment itself is inconvenient then you should ring them immediately to inform them of this and reschedule for a more convenient time. It is normal for HA agreements to stipulate that any missed appointments with trades ppl will incur a charge.

                  It may be worthwhile asking HA for details of the company doing the test and can negotiate between yourselves a more convenient appointment.
                  I'm a good tenant with great landlords
                  I'm also a living, breathing, fully cooked female.


                    The electrician was happy to change the appointment, it's the HA that won't budge. They have said that if the appointment is not met they will pass it on to the Housing Management Team for their action but I don't even know what that is.


                      Can i request copy of Housing Association's electrical test

                      I have posted on here before about my Registered Social Landlord requesting a periodic electrical test. The test was carried out by their contractor 10 weeks ago. Last week I received a call from a housing officer to say they now want to send their own electrician to do the test again. I asked why and they couldn't supply details because the person who they want to carry out the test was on leave. Anyway, the HO called again today to say they wanted to make an appointment. When she called last week she said it was for a visual check but today she said they want to carry out the test again. If a qualified electrician has carried out the test (last week on the phone she said there were no health and safety issues and that the readings were within limits) today she said that it's borderline. The tenancy is my parents name but I am dealing with it because my mum has major health issues (suffers from anxiety and stress related illnesses). It causes her extreme distress to have someone in the house and I can't believe they want to put her through it all again. Why would they need to repeat the test, am I legally obliged to let them do it again given that I have allowed access for the first test. Also am I legally entitled to a copy of the original report, I'd like to see for myself what it says. I honestly thought because they hadn't contacted us in 10 weeks that there wouldn't be any major problems. At the moment I don't know what to do for the best. I am scared if I refuse they can cause problems as regards eviction or demanding access.


                        Your parents are not legally obliged to let them have access to the house to repeat the test. The landlord can demand access all they like, but your parents do not have to grant it.

                        However, the landlord may take a dim view of this, if they believe there is a safety issue - they don't want the house to burn down, and it might if there is a serious fault. But your point about them having waited 10 weeks is valid. They are not meeting their duty of care to your parents if they allow a serious fault to go unrepaired for so long.

                        You are not legally entitled to see the report, because the landlord commissioned (and paid for) the report. But there is no harm in asking and your request might well be granted. However, you are unlikely to be able to interpret the readings unless you are an electrician. There should however be a summary of the findings, including a list of any faults found. Don't let them fob you off with an excuse not to send it to you like "But you won't be able to understand it", I'd just say "I have a friend who is an electrican".

                        BTW It is also unlikely that the HO would be able to interpret the readings!

                        If you can get a copy of the report, you should look for any items that are listed as Code 1 faults. These are the most serious and represent a immediate danger, and should be fixed immediately. Code 2s are less serious fault, and should be fixed as soon as possible. Code 3 means they don't know what the problem is and need to investigate further. Code 4 means it does not comply with the regulations but it's not anything that needs to be fixed.

                        There is a website called www.electriciansforums.co.uk where you can get help to interpret what a Periodic Inspection Report is telling you. There is a Testing forum on the website where you should post your questions.

                        Good luck



                          Can I suggest you have a word with the Tenant Services Authority who have a degree of control over social landlords. The law is slightly different in the Private Rental Sector and the TSA will know the rules relating to your parents tenancy.


                            How often does your elec/gas supplier have to check ur meter etc

                            Someone just came to read the meter but we've already submitted it online. He said that he needs to come in anyway for an inspection but it's not even a year since he last inspected it. I said it's not convenient and he can rearranged He said he's putting it down as we refused access.


                              I think it depends on who your supplier is. By law, they should read your meter once every two years.

                              I submit my meter readings online every quarter, but I think my meters also get read every 6 months.


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