Electrical checks to be included in review of private rented premises

The Electrical Safety Council (ESC) has welcomed the latest government announcement on its review of the private rented sector.

The government has agreed to conduct a wide-ranging review to consolidate legislation, with the aim of producing a much simpler and more straightforward set of regulations that landlords and tenants can easily understand. This will include work on housing health and safety rating systems and the introduction of a simpler, more straightforward set of quality standards for housing in the sector.

Now, Baroness Stowell, Under Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (CLG) has confirmed that the review will also consider the need for regular checks of electrical installations.

Phil Buckle, Director General of the ESC, said: “We are delighted by Baroness Stowell’s statement that CLG will ensure the PRS review considers the introduction of a compulsory system for regularly checking electrical installations. The ESC is committed to raising standards in the sector and has lobbied hard and long for such a requirement.

“Half of all fires in GB homes are caused by electricity and research suggests that private tenants are likely to be at greater risk of fire than residents in other housing sectors. Further research indicates that they also have a higher risk of electric shock than owner-occupiers.

“Given the significant expansion of the PRS in the last decade, the current lack of specific requirements around electrical safety needs to be urgently addressed.”