Maurice O'Connor, Head of Compliance in Caxtons' Block Management department has been reviewing new regulations that will affect landlords.

In late summer 2018, Housing Secretary James Brokenshire announced a comprehensive review of fire safety guidelines, which began in the autumn. As part of the review, it was proposed that all privately let homes should undergo an electrical installation check.

This month, the government confirmed it will introduce mandatory five-year electrical safety checks for all private rental homes in England.

In future, and in order to comply with ever increasing rules and regulations, landlords will have to instruct qualified electrical inspectors to undertake checks. Already compulsory for houses in multiple occupation (HMOs), the first properties to qualify for this latest safety measure will be new tenancies, and will be closely followed by existing lettings.

So far, no date has been set for the checks to be brought into law – this will take time to pass through Parliament.

However, the rule already applies in Scotland, so there is a precedent to follow.

The group Electrical Safety First has been campaigning for many years to tighten the law relating to landlord obligations. On their website* they offer sound advice to landlords saying "Electrical Safety First has found that landlords are exposing themselves to significant financial risks, from fines and invalidated insurance, through not acting on their electrical safety obligations.

"Landlords are also putting millions of UK private tenants at risk of serious accident or fire."

Minister for Housing and Homelessness Heather Wheeler MP said: "These new measures will reduce the risk of faulty electrical equipment, giving people peace of mind and helping to keep them safe in their homes."

Caxtons will, of course, provide advice and guidance in relation to this impending change in the law.


Maurice OConnor compressed

Maurice O'Connor