3rd Feb 2020
Failure to carry out new mandatory electrical safety checks by landlords in their properties could mean they will have to pay as much as £30,000 in fines, following the government’s recent announcement.
The newly introduced legislation will mean that BTL landlords must have all wiring and sockets within their rental properties checked out by a qualified electrician every five years.
Rented homes with new tenancies from July 1st 2020 will be subject to the legislation which will also be enforceable for all rented properties from April1st 2021.
The date for the introduction of the regulation for England is aligned to Scotland’s where it has already been made mandatory.
According to figures from the charily Electrical Safety First, over half of UK domestic fires are caused by electricity.
The charity is extremely positive about the new legislation will help protect millions of renters from electrical faults and a major reduction in electrical fires over the coming years.
In 2019 a Prevention of Future Deaths report was commissioned by the government following the inquest into the death of Professor John Alliston. The report called for urgent action to be taken by the government to prevent deaths in rented homes caused by electrical faults in England.
Martyn Allen, at Electrical Safety First, said: “This latest commitment by the Government to bring mandatory electrical safety checks into force is a success for millions of renters and their landlords in England.
“It has been long overdue that the dangers posed by electricity in the home were taken as seriously as that of gas and this legislation will act as a protective measure for millions. Whilst we welcome this crucial step in protecting tenants the safety of electrics should not be a lottery based on tenure type and we hope to see the regulation mirrored in the social housing sector in the near future.
“We have heard harrowing tales of fatal accidents caused by unsafe electrics in rented properties and this new regulation will act as a step to ensuring such tragedies don’t happen again.
“Tenants around the country will finally be able to hold landlords to account for ensuring the safety of electrics in their property and while we acknowledge the majority of landlords already take suitable measures to ensure their properties are safe, this new law will hold those that fail to do so, to account.”
He added: “It is now vital this new regulation has teeth and that the enforcement body has the resources to act when necessary, to protect the tenant.”