The Importance of Electrical Safety Standards in the Private Rental Sector
With homeownership now a distant dream for many adults, the private rental sector in the UK is thriving. Renting from the private sector can be a mixed bag. Fortunately, there is legislation in place that compels private landlords to maintain certain standards. Few of these are more important than electrical safety standards.
What Responsibilities Do Landlords Have?
Landlords are legally required to obtain an electrical safety certificate. The electrical certificate for landlords certifies that the electric installation in a rented property has passed a safety inspection. You can apply for a Landlord Electrical Certificate online for as little as £99. The website electricalsafetycertificate.co.uk has all the information that you need about applying for a certificate. They are fully accredited, as per UK law, to conduct safety checks on electrical installations in rented properties.
You should always make renters aware of the certificate and its purpose. Offer to show them your safety certificate instead of waiting to be asked. Legally, you are required to produce the document on the tenant’s request.
Why Do These Standards Matter?
We are lucky to live in a country that enforces strict safety standards for the electrics in our home. The consequences of unsafe electronics can be catastrophic. A faulty appliance caused the tragedy that unfolded at Grenfell Tower. Failings in safety standards exacerbated it. The new regulations are there to help.
Some people make a point of switching their appliances off at the mains socket every night. This behaviour is good practice, but it is still the exception and not the rule. Most of us leave some of our devices plugged into the mains, whether on standby or to charge their battery. Most modern tech businesses build their electronics to a high standard. If whoever built your property wired it up correctly, there will be safety mechanisms in place to protect you and your property in the event of a power surge.
How Can Landlords Keep Their Properties Safe?
Faulty electronics and bad wiring can pose a serious threat to both people and property. While it is clearly in the interests of landlords to ensure that their properties are safe, many felt that wasn’t happening. Hence, the new regulations, which came into force in June 2020.
In addition to ensuring that the property is safe and obtaining the required documentation, landlords can also protect themselves and their properties by encouraging good habits from their tenants. If you are willing to invest in a smart plug or a mains adapter that tenants can control remotely, you will make it easy for tenants to switch off entirely at night. If you also explain to them that there are financial benefits to them doing so, their bills will be lower. It shouldn’t be a tough sell.
It is the landlord’s responsibility to adhere to all of the relevant safety regulations. Landlords shouldn’t wait for their tenants to request information. It is much more prudent to go through safety documentation with them and advise them on how they can ensure that they and the property remain safe.