The government is frequently introducing new regulations to improve the safety of residential premises – particularly in the private rented sector. As a country, we are making steps to ensure we’re offering high-quality, safe and secure housing with help from proactive Landlords who are looking to preserve the value of their properties and keep tenants out of danger.
In Cambridge, we’ve seen a rising number of Landlords who manage their own properties, asking about an EICR so we’ve put together this article to help answer those questions:
So, what is an EICR and what does it mean?
EICR stands for Electrical Installation Condition Report and is carried out to determine any dangers and identify any areas for improvement within a property.
Why do I need it?
New regulations that came into force on 1 June 2020 requires that all Landlords have the electrical installations in their property inspected and tested by a qualified professional at least every 5 years. Since 1 April 2021, this regulation applies to all cases where a private tenant has a right to occupy a property as their only or main residence and pays rent – this includes assured shorthold tenancies, HMOs and licences to occupy.
See the end of this article for exceptions.
What will be inspected and tested?
The ‘fixed’ electrical parts of the property such as wiring, socket-outlets, light fittings and the consumer unit. It will also cover any permanently connected equipement such as showers and extractors.
The regulations do not currently cover electrical appliances, however it is recommended that Landlords regularly carry out portable appliance testing (PAT) on any electrical appliance that they provide and supply tenants with a record of any inspections carried out as good practise.
Tenants are responsible for making sure any electrical appliances they bring into the property are safe.
What do I need to do with this report?
- Supply a copy of the report to a new tenant before they occupy the premises, or to an existing tenant within 28 days of the inspection and test
- Supply a copy to the local authority, if requested, within 7 days
- Retain a copy to give to the next qualified professional 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 shorter, if specified as necessary in the report
- Supply written confirmation of the completed of remedial works from the electrician to the tenant and local authority within 28 days of completion of the works
What if I don’t get it done?
If a Landlord is found in breach of their duties, the worst case scenario is that local authorities may impose a financial penalty of up to £30,000.
Visit the Gov.uk website to understand what constitutes a breach of duties and about appeals.
There are some premises that are exceptions set out in the regulations and include social housing, lodgers, those on a long lease of 7 years or more, student halls of residence, hostels and refuges, care homes, hospitals and hospices, and other accommodation relating to healthcare provisions.
If a property is newly built or has been completely rewired, it should have an Electrical Installation Certificate (EIC). Landlords can provide a copy of the EIC and, if requested, the local authority and they will then not be required to carry out any further checks for 5 years after the EIC has been issued.
If you’re in need of an EICR in the Cambridge, Ely and Newmarket area then we recommend MS Electrical who carry out the majority of our electrical tests and inspections.
Price: Pricing depends on the size of the property with an average EICR test costing around £150 – £180
Time: A typical inspection and test can take between 1 – 5 hours
Report: A report from MS Electrical will be back to you in 2 – 4 working days
For more information on the standard that electrical installations should meet, a breakdown of what the report will show and more frequently asked questions visit the Gov.uk website on electrical safety standards.