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Mandatory Electrical Safety Regulations from 1 July 2020

View profile for Bukola Obadun-Craigs
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The Electrical Safety Standards in Private Rented Sector (England) Regulations 2020

From 1 July 2020, private landlords will be required to ensure that the electrical safety standards are met during any period that the residential property is occupied under a specified tenancy. This means that any tenancies that are either new, renewed or become statutory periodic tenancies on or after 1 July 2020 will need to comply. All existing tenancies in a fixed term or those that are periodic prior to 1 July 2020 will need to comply from 1 April 2021.

What must landlords do?

An electrical safety report must be prepared by a qualified electrician and a copy should be provided by the landlord to any prospective tenant within 28 days of a request to view the report. The report must provide the date of the next inspection, and should the local authority request a copy it must be supplied with seven days.

Any works identified in the report must be carried out within 28 days from the date the notice is received by the landlord. If the works are not carried out within this time frame the local authority can intervene but must first notify the landlord of its intention to carry out the required works. The local authority can recover the cost from the landlord should such intervention be necessary.

Unlike the energy performance certificates and gas safety certificates, failure to provide a copy of the electrical safety certificate at the commencement of the tenancy will not invalidate a section 21 Notice. However, there is a significant financial penalty for breach.

Penalty

The civil penalty for landlords who fail to comply with the regulations is a fine up to £30,000. Further penalties can be imposed by the local authority on the landlord for failing to provide a tenant or prospective tenant with an electrical safety certificate at the required time.

In the early stages of lockdown, the Government issued guidance making it clear that all reasonable steps must be taken by landlords to comply with their duties under these regulations and such like. To date there have been no reports on exemption or delay to landlords’ duties due to Covid-19.

Will there be the resources?

Although normality is slowly resuming, we are still far from what we were pre Covid- 19. Are there enough available electricians to ensure that landlords in need of an electrical safety report, will receive one before these regulations become mandatory for all new private tenancies, from 1 July 2020?

If you have any specific questions you wish to discuss, please contact Bukola Obadun-Craigs.

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