Electrical Safety Standards Regs in the PRS – important guidance published

Guidance setting out how the Electrical Safety Standards in the Private Rented Sector (England) Regulations 2020 affect landlords, tenants and local authorities have been published by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government.

These new Regulations, which take effect from July 1st 2020, require landlords to have the electrical installations in their properties inspected and tested by a person who is qualified and competent, at least every 5 years.

Landlords have to provide a copy of the electrical safety report to their tenants, and to their local authority if requested.

Landlords of privately rented accommodation must:

Ensure national standards for electrical safety are met. These are set out in the 18th edition of the ‘Wiring Regulations’, which are published as British Standard 7671.

Ensure the electrical installations in their rented properties are inspected and tested by a qualified and competent person at least every 5 years.

Obtain a report from the person conducting the inspection and test which gives the results and sets a date for the next inspection and test.

Supply a copy of this report to the existing tenant within 28 days of the inspection and test.

Supply a copy of this report to a new tenant before they occupy the premises.

Supply a copy of this report to any prospective tenant within 28 days of receiving a request for the report.

Supply the local authority with a copy of this report within 7 days of receiving a request for a copy.

Retain a copy of the report to give to the inspector and tester who will undertake the next inspection and test.

Where the report shows that remedial or further investigative work is necessary, complete this work within 28 days or any shorter period if specified as necessary in the report.

Supply written confirmation of the completion of the remedial works from the electrician to the tenant and the local authority within 28 days of completion of the works.

The Regulations apply to new tenancies from 1 July 2020 and existing tenancies from 1 April 2021.

Inspectors will use the following classification codes to indicate where a landlord must undertake remedial work.

Code 1 (C1): Danger present. Risk of injury. The electrical inspector may make any C1 hazards safe before leaving the property.

Code 2 (C2): Potentially dangerous. Further Investigation (FI): Further investigation required without delay.

Code 3 (C3): Improvement recommended. Further remedial work is not required for the report to be deemed satisfactory.

If codes C1 or C2 are identified in on the report, then remedial work will be required. The report will state the installation is unsatisfactory for continued use.

If an inspector identifies that further investigative work is required (FI), the landlord must also ensure this is carried out.

The C3 classification code does not indicate remedial work is required, but only that improvement is recommended.

Landlords don’t have to make the improvement, but it would improve the safety of the installation if they did.

Read the full guides for landlords and tenants here.

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  1. PossessionFriendUK39

    Statistics don’t support  ‘singling-out’ the PRS,

    MHCLG justification, that PRS – largest sector ( only slightly more than Social Housing )

    Most fires caused by Overloading circuits, or faulty appliances, neither of which will be addressed by a 5 year inspection.

    If there was genuine concern that rented property was Not electrically safe,  Then requires All Rented Property to have an Electrical certificate once every 10 years.

    A properties electrical circuit isn’t going to change significantly in 5 years. If it hasn’t got RCD’s now, or isn’t safe now,  then an Electrical check will put it safe,

    ARLA, NLA and then RLA  – All sold-out Landlords agreeing unanimously with the working group for 5 year Test – Only applicable to PRS.

  2. Woodentop

    Should have done this years ago, all our landlords have voluntarily signed up to this nearly two decades ago. It has provided risk management under H&S regulations, due care and diligence with insurers and peace of mind to both landlord and tenant. If something should go wrong, ‘injury lawyers for you’ can’t just wade in on the landlord if it can be shown to have been created by the tenant. Its part of our in-going inventory.


    Landlords who object are often those that have doggy wiring etc and don’t want to foot the bill. Err, that’s a responsibility of a landlord.

    1. PossessionFriendUK39

      Why have Only  PRS tenants been singled-out then – do you not support it for every Tenant  ?

      1. Woodentop

        Certainly every tenant and it should also apply to Airbnd & alike short term letting. They need full licensing and regulation more than anyone. Ridiculous for government to say someone living in a rented property for only a few days is not at the same risk as along term tenant. It is not the tenants term which matters two hoots. Risk is the building occupied by a tenant at any single day. One tenant in a property for 6 months is not greater risk than several tenants on short terms over the same period, probably less risk as they would have longer history in the property to notice issues. Unregulated properties with Short term lettings walk away and can’t be bothered to report issues, particularly if they think they will get the blame.


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