Published on September 8th, 2020
I regularly advise property investors and companies in relation to their investments and acquisitions, and whilst many landlords are aware of their obligations under the Gas Safety Regulations they are not so familiar with the new electrical safety regulations (formally known as the Electrical Safety Standards in the Private Rented Sector (England) Regulations 2020) which came into force on 1st June 2020.
These new regulations (which apply only in England) require checks to be carried out on all electrical installations at least every 5 years with the landlord being required to provide a copy of the electrical safety report (usually an Electrical Installation Condition Report or EICR) to the tenants and also the local authority if necessary.
The Regulations apply to all new specified tenancies from 1st July 2020 and to all existing specified tenancies from the 1 April 2021. Landlords therefore have (at the time of writing) just less than seven months to ensure that their existing tenancies are complaint.
What tenancies are covered by the new regulations?
The regulations apply to `specified tenancies´ which are tenancies where a private tenant has a right to occupy a property as their only or main residence and pays rent. This includes assured shorthold tenancies and also licences to occupy but does not include certain `excluded tenancies´ such as (but not limited to) long leases for more than seven years and shared accommodation with the landlord or his/her family such as lodgers.
What are the Landlord´s duties?
a) By 1st April 2021 in relation to existing specified tenancies, or
b) Before the tenancy commences in relation to a new specified tenancy (a tenancy entered into from 1st July 2020)
What are the risks of non-compliance?
Local Housing Authorities are able to serve remedial notices and urgent remedial notices on landlords which can lead to significant financial penalties being imposed. The regulations provide that if a local authority finds that a landlord is in breach of their obligations under the regulations, then they can impose a fine on the landlord of up to £30,000.
It is therefore important that landlords keep proper records and are able to demonstrate that they have complied with their obligations under the regulations, to protect them, if they find that they are facing action by the Local Authority. In addition to being subject to a hefty penalty, landlords should be aware that Local Authorities also have powers under the regulations to arrange for the necessary remedial works to be completed and recover the money spent from the landlord.
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For any further information or to obtain advice regarding the electrical regulations please contact Ricky Allen on 01200 422152 or email@example.com.
IMPORTANT NOTICE: The information provided in our articles reflects only a narrative of some elements to consider on the topic. The articles do not contain considered legal advice and should not be relied upon as advice. If you are interested in obtaining advice, please contact one of our lawyers who will be happy and able to advise you on your own particular circumstances.