Landlord law: Your quick guide to electrical safety checks

Always ensure you visually check electrics – at the start of every tenancy, as well as annually.

Every five years, plus annual checks by you, £120–£200.

You must ensure all the electrics are safe. So, at the start of every tenancy and annually:

  • Visually check sockets, light fittings and switches for broken parts, damaged cables and signs of scorching;
  • Ensure all appliances have at least the CE safety mark. Check that their wires, plugs and parts have no visible damage or burn marks.

Despite what some pen pushers will tell you, you don’t have to do annual PAT tests on any appliances – and just as well, for at £30 a pop most landlords would rather dump their perfectly serviceable kettles and toasters in silvery Scafell Pikes all over Britain.

By law, an electrician has to test the electrical installation of any property let to three or more sharers every five years (£120–£200). The government has consulted on new rules to make this a requirement for all rental homes, but is yet to announce further details.

You also have a legal obligation to use only qualified people to carry out electrical work. Find one at niceic.com, elecsa.co.uk or napit.org.uk.

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