What are The Electrical Safety Standards Regulations 2020?

Electrical Safety Standards Regulations 2020

What are The Electrical Safety Standards Regulations 2020?

21 January 2020

Landlords take note: a new law is about to be passed which will directly affect you and your rental property.

A new law is about to be passed which makes regular electrical safety checks mandatory for all UK-based rental properties.

For advice about what you need to do next, get in touch with your local Douglas Allen branch and we’ll tell you everything that you need to know.

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For an overview of what’s included in the legislation, read on...

What is The Electrical Safety Standards Regulations 2020?

In the coming year, you’ll hear more about “The Electrical Safety Standards in the Private Rented Sector (England) Regulations 2020”. So what is this? Put simply, this is a form of legislation that’s designed to safeguard your rental property and its tenants.

The legislation simply says that landlords who rent in the UK will need a qualified electrician to make mandatory electrical checks on their property. This will then have to be repeated every five years, or landlords will face a fine of up to £30,000.

What does ‘qualified electrician’ mean?

Checks will need to be carried out by an electrician who is deemed qualified to do so in accordance with the Electrical Safety Standards. So, it’s not enough to just bring your neighbour’s-brother’s-cousin over for a quick once-over. Take our advice and enlist the help of a qualified electrician – and soon.

Any exemptions?

These new regulations will apply to all properties across the private rented sector, including HMOs, replacing the existing requirements regarding electrical installation testing and inspection.

If your tenant shares accommodation or amenities with you (the landlord) or your family, you’ll be exempt from this new law.

What happens next?

Well, the bill needs to be passed through both the House of Commons and the House of Lords before it becomes the law.

Is it a sure thing?

During this process there can also be changes made, but it’s unusual that any changes are significant.

When is it likely to happen?

Once passed, the law will apply to all new tenancies starting from the 1st July 2020. For all existing tenancies, the changes will need to have been made before 1st April 2021 (no, really).

Will I have to do anything else following the check?

In our experience, many of the electrical installations that we find in our landlords’ homes wouldn’t pass the electrical safety standards set out by this legislation. That’s not to say they're unsafe, it just means work by a qualified electrician will need to be carried out before your property will pass its inspection.

Our advice to landlords is to give yourself plenty of time before the law comes into effect to carry out your checks and fix any issues before the deadline. Bear in mind, there may be a shortage of qualified electricians to make these checks, especially with the deadline looming.

For more advice about how to keep your rental property safe for tenants, get in touch.