It is fair to say that 2020 has been a roller-coaster year for everyone in the UK. The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has proved a real challenge for many people and impacted many industries. The private rental sector is definitely one that has been affected unduly and this has left many landlords facing an uncertain future. This has not been helped by new electrical safety standards which came into force in the private rental sector as of June 2020. Many private landlords feel this was not the best timing when they were already struggling with the consequences of COVID-19.
All private landlords must follow the new rules on electrical safety standards though, so it is essential to know what they are and what they mean.
What Do They Mean For Private Landlords?
The main aim of these new changes is to make all landlords ensure any electrical installations in their rented property are safe for tenants to use. The UK Government have been prompted to take action in order to safeguard electrical safety standards in the private rented sector. These changes apply to new tenants from 1st July 2020 and existing tenants from March 2021.
The new laws mean that landlords must have an inspection and test for all electrical installations in their property at least every 5 years. This work must be done by a qualified person. It is key to note that this does not apply to any electrical equipment that tenants own. PAT Testing is also not a requirement under these new June 2020 laws. Many landlords though may feel this is simply good practice and carry it out anyway.
What Happens After Inspection And Testing?
Once the inspection and testing have been carried out, a report will be provided to the landlord. This report not only gives landlords the results of said work but also sets out a date for the next inspection.
Once a landlord has the final report, they must:
- Give a copy to any existing tenants within 28 days
- A copy must be given to any new tenants before they move in
- Give a copy to any prospective tenant who asks for it within 28 days of request
- Send your local authority a copy if requested within 7 days
- Retain a copy for your own records and to give to the person who does the next testing/inspection
Where the report outlines any work that needs doing, this must be done within 28 days of the period specified in the report. Once any work needed is complete, landlords should confirm in writing that this has been done to the LEA, tenant and tester. This should be done within 28 days of any work being finished.
Contact Bowsers Solicitors For Advice On New Changes
Here at Bowsers Solicitors, we have been helping landlords navigate the legalities around commercial property rental for many years now. With offices in Wisbech and March, we can help landlords in the area fully understand the new changes around electrical safety standards and how to meet them. Get in touch on 01354 705993 (March office) or 01832 770757 (Wisbech office) today for more details.