Landlords and their agents are used to the need for various documents to be in place when a new tenant moves into their property. From the tenancy agreement, to the How To Rent Guide, the gas safety check to the inventory, there are many boxes to tick to make sure a tenancy is put together correctly.

From the 1st July 2020, it will be a legal requirement in England for new tenancies to have an Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR)- produced every five years. This document is often referred to as a ‘Landlord Safety Test’ or ‘Home buyers Test’. Any existing tenancies will have to have their EICR completed by 1st April 2021.

Of course, over the years, landlords and agents have carried out their own risk assessments on electrical installations; where a consumer unit is particularly old or a plug socket is cracked, it was obvious that repairs or updates would be needed.

The very nature of electricity and electrical installations means that often cables are hidden and consumer units are stored away in cupboards. This can often lead to a view of ‘out of sight, out of mind’ for many people.

The EICR will provide a report which holds quite a lot of information on the condition of the electrical installation. The most important thing, from a landlord’s perspective, is knowing what is classed as unsatisfactory and what is classed as safe.

Anything within the installation that is found to be unsatisfactory, or worse, will have to be updated to meet modern regulations before a safety certificate can be issued.

Faulty installations and wiring are one of the main reasons for electrical fires in the home. Therefore the government’s legislation on making these safety inspections mandatory is very welcome by us and the wider industry.

The main purpose of these inspections is to guarantee the safety of residents, their properties and to ensure individuals are not susceptible to electric shocks or fires. Simply put, these inspections will ensure tenants and their properties will be much safer.

The team at Radcliffe & Rust will be contacting existing landlords, as and when their property is inline to have the EICR carried out, and if you are a landlord needing guidance on the new legislation then please get in touch.

David Radcliffe