Landlords are supporting calls for the Government to introduce mandatory electrical safety checks in private rented housing.
On the day that Liberal Democrat MP, Mike Thornton, initiates a debate in Parliament on electrical safety in private rented housing, the Residential Landlords’ Association (RLA) is supporting calls for legislation to ensure rented homes are checked by a registered electrician every ten years.
Existing legislation affects only Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMOs) – shared houses occupied by more than five people – and requires tests every five years. Owner occupied houses are only “recommended” to have electrical tests every ten years. RLA further supports more frequent inspections on the advice of the electrician.
The RLA also believes that all electrical installations should contain Residual Current Devices (RCD) which can cut the electric supply when there is a fault.
The proposals form an important part of the RLA’s aim of a safe, legal and secure private rented sector.
Commenting ahead of the debate, Alan Ward, chairman of the Residential Landlords’ Association said:
“It is illogical that gas checks are required annually but electrical safety checks are applied only to a part of the market.
“As with gas, tenants should rightly expect that when they move into a property the electrics are safe and should be able to see a dated certificate to prove this. However tenants must also not overload or abuse their own electrical equipment which is a frequent cause of fire and injury.”