Training for Professionals News

  • Mar 01/2017

    Electrical Safety

    In a very quiet change to the rules, in December 2016 new Electrical Equipment (Safety) Regulations were passed changing the responsibilities for manufacturers, importers and "distributors". This latter phrase will include landlords and letting agents as they will be supplying appliances in the course of a business activity.

    Whilst quite a lot of the rules mirror the 1994 rules (which are largely revoked by these regulations) there are some additional responsibilities that the letting market is going to have to work out how it will integrate into its working practices.

    Firstly it should be said none of the new rules are believed to affect appliances first supplied before the 2016 regulations came into force, the 8 December 2016. Therefore, if you let a property with a washing machine last year you remain under the 1994 regs in respect of that washing machine, even if there is a renewal or even a new tenancy. However, if a new washing machine is purchased and supplied after 8 December 2016 then the new rules must be followed in respect of that new appliance. From this it can be seen that this will not affect one house and not another, rather it will affect one appliance and not another, making management more tricky.

    The new rules principally cause our market problems around supplying documentation that is now required by law and has to be provided by the manufacturer. For example, in 2020, if you want to rent out a property that used to be the landlord's home with a washing machine purchased in 2017, you will have to have the manufacturer's documentation to supply to the tenant. Obviously, (and presuming it is even available from the landlord), you will want to guard this original information very carefully and it should probably never leave the office with only copies being provided to tenants. Yet again there will be significant value to be added through managing this process through the inventory.

    Breaches of the legislation carries an unlimited fine and or three month in prison.

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