As a landlord in the United Kingdom (England, Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland), how conversant are you with the Electrical Landlord Certificates? And do you regularly carry out a periodic inspection (domestic electrical installation condition) report? While it may not be as mandatory as the gas regulation, it is becoming a vital requirement in many instances. In fact, in 2006, Scotland reduced the maximum years required to conduct Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR) from the previous 10 to 5. In a 2010 report by the Office for National Statistics (ONS), the reported accident electrical fires were 20,403, and this led to 3,324 individuals getting injured and 48 deaths. Electrocution alone accounted for 22 deaths. These findings were a great concern and lots of pressure was put on the landlord. As a landlord, you need to know the following:
1. Responsibility Lies with You
Although you may not be occupying the premises, as the landlord, electrical safety in the premise lies with you. You are required to ensure that the electrical system is safe for your tenant. In some regions, you will be required to furnish your tenant and relevant authorities with the electrical certificate showing that the necessary checks and tests have been done. The Electrical Safety Council (ESC) groups the electricals in two. The first is the fixed or hard-wired fixtures which include sockets, switches, wiring/circuits and lighting fixtures. The other class is the electrical appliances and consists of electric cookers, toasters, refrigerators, kettles, ovens and more.
2. Invalidate Insurance
Did you know that in a case of a fire caused by an electrical fault, you may not be compensated by your insurer? It doesn’t matter that you were not occupying the property and it was caused by your tenant. Many insurers before providing property insurance make it compulsory for the landlord to undertake the inspection and assessment. And they emphasise on it being done by not any electrician but a competent and registered provider.
3. Financial Risk /Ruin
While it may come at an additional and unplanned for cost, you stand to lose more if you ignore the electrical inspection. Firstly, the tenant is legally authorised to sue you in the event that he/she is harmed or suffers financially or psychologically because of electrical errors. This may be in form of electric shock, ruined appliances, electrical fires, or a member of the family or guest being electrocuted. Also, remember that there are high chances that your insurance won’t compensate you.
4. Qualified and Registered Electricians
The periodic inspection is to be carried out only by a qualified and registered electrocution. The provider will assess the wiring, test the appliances, confirm there are no bottlenecks (overloaded system, too much resistance, lack or earthing, defective wiring, open circuits), check for the possibility of an electrical fire, or electric shock. The Electrical Certificate will indicate any flaws and you will need to correct them. In the UK, authorised electricians such as Electricians Portsmouth will be registered with bodies such as ELECSA, NICEIC, or NAPIT.
5. Checks Done Periodically
The Institute of Electrical Engineers (IEE) advises landlords and property owners to inspect the electrical after a few years. This is because, the wiring and appliances will deteriorate due to normal wear and tear, overloading from many appliances, poor handling, accidents, or initial installation of low-grade materials. Apart from Scotland where the maximum time period between checks is 5 years, the rest of the UK is 10 years. The inspection and assessment are also carried out when tenancy changes but it won’t be necessary if only a few months have elapsed between one tenant to another. It’s becoming common for Housing Associations, Local Councils, and Estate Agents to ask for Electrical Certificates.
The importance of ensuring your building is safe for occupancy when it comes to electrical matters can’t be taken lightly. You may not only experience financial ruins, or your insurance being invalidated but may also be sued by a tenant or the authorities. This is why you should ensure that your property is electrically safe and meets the minimum recommended regulations and standards. But, where do you start?
Electrical Landlord Certificates Portsmouth
Well, all you need is talking to is Portsmouth Electricians. Firstly, we are an experienced firm based in the UK and are very conversant with the different regulations. Secondly, we offer a range of electrical services including periodic inspection and testing service, wiring, boiler installation and repair, solar system installation. Thirdly, our staff members are highly qualified, skilled and competent. Fourthly, we are registered with NICEIC, ELECSA, and NAPIT and are also accredited by leading institutions and organisations. Give us a call or visit our website to discuss inspecting and testing the electrical in your property and to provide the Electrical Landlord Certificate. How much will the quote cost you? Well, it’s absolutely free of charge.