New safety rules for landlords come into force

Wednesday, 3 March, 2021

Landlords will have to make sure that electrical installations in their homes for new and existing tenancies are safety tested by a qualified person.

From 1 April 2021 new regulations will require landlords to make sure that the electricity supply in their rented properties is safe - this includes arranging for a test report from a qualified person at least every five years. Tenants must also be provided with a copy of the report.

Failure to comply with the new Electrical Safety Standards in the Private Rented Sector (England) Regulations 2020 could result in a fine of up to £30,000.  The regulations were previously in place for new tenancies only, but have now been extended to cover and protect those already in an existing tenancy.

Councillor Narinder Bains, Cabinet Lead for Neighbourhoods, Safety and Enforcement, said: “The health and wellbeing of all our residents is a priority. We are fortunate to have a thriving private rented sector with landlords providing good quality accommodation for families in the borough and these regulations will help to further protect their tenants.”

“I would urge tenants who have concerns to first raise them with their landlords but if they need further advice then they can speak with our Environmental Health Private Sector Housing Team.”

For tenants, these regulations mean that:

These regulations do not cover social housing. Tenants of housing associations should contact their housing provider if they are worried about the electrics in the property. These regulations also do not cover tenants who live with their landlord (lodgers).

  • The ‘fixed’ electrical parts of the property, like the wiring, plug sockets, light fittings and fuse box, including permanently connected equipment such as showers and extractors in rented homes must be inspected and tested every 5 years, or more often than this if the inspector thinks that is necessary
  • The regulations do not cover electrical appliances such as kettles, toasters, hairdryers etc
  • Throughout the whole time a tenant is living at the property, national electrical safety standards must be met
  • Your landlord must give you a report that shows the condition of the property’s electrical installations
  • If you signed a new tenancy agreement on or after 1 July 2020 the regulations will apply to your rented home straight away
  • If you signed your tenancy agreement before 1 July 2020 the regulations will apply for you from 1 April 2021

Find out more information on these new regulations or contact Havant Borough Council at ehealth@havant.gov.uk or on 023 9244 6670.

There is also details on the new legislation via the government’s website.