The New Repairing Standards

Chris Harkins
01 Mar 2024

Understanding Landlord Responsibilities: A Guide to The New Repairing Standards

 

As a landlord, navigating the legal landscape of property management can be exhausting. However, it's crucial for ensuring the safety of tenants as well as ensuring you’re in compliance with the law.

With the New Repairing Standards set to take effect in March, many of the regulations you're familiar with are about to change.

 

So, we'd like to highlight the core responsibilities that the New Repairing Standards focus on, helping you to identify areas within your properties that may no longer meet these guidelines, as well as electrical faults to look out for.

When Should Landlords Organise Inspections?

 

An inspection needs to be carried out every five years. However, the exception to this is whenever a landlord has a new tenant moving in or has a new electrical appliance installed.

Who is Responsible for Covering Inspection Costs?

 

Landlords are responsible for covering the costs associated with electrical safety inspections. Passing these expenses onto tenants is only permissible if ordered by the First-tier Tribunal for Scotland.

Providing Access for Inspections

 

Facilitating access to the property for inspection purposes falls under the landlord's responsibility. This involves ensuring that inspectors have the necessary access rights to conduct thorough inspections of electrical installations and equipment.

 

Electrical Safety Inspections: Ensuring Tenant Safety

 

When inspecting a property for any electrical faults, there are two methods of inspections that are used to determine if any electrical repairs is needed.

The first one is known as an Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR) - which includes examining wiring, consumer units, light fittings, switches, and socket outlets.

The second test is known as a Portable Appliance Test (commonly known as PAT Testing), which ensures all electrical installations, fixtures, fittings, and appliances are safe and in working order.

Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR)

 

The EICR plays a pivotal role in ensuring electrical safety within rental properties. Conducted by a qualified electrician, this thorough examination covers every aspect of the property's electrical system.

From wiring and consumer units to light fittings, switches, and socket outlets - it's an essential process, providing detailed insights into all potential electrical hazards and offering clear guidance on necessary actions to ensure full compliance with regulations.

 

Portable Appliance Testing (PAT Testing)

Alongside an EICR, PAT Testing plays a crucial role in ensuring the safety of electrical equipment provided to tenants.

PAT Testing involves visual inspections and electrical tests to identify any faults or defects that could pose a risk to tenants. It ensures that all electrical equipment provided by the landlord is safe and properly maintained.

These include:

- Appliances: Testing electrical appliances such as refrigerators, washing machines, ovens, and microwaves to ensure they are safe for use.

- Fixed Electrical Equipment: Testing fixed electrical equipment, including light fixtures, heaters, and built-in appliances, to verify their safety and compliance with regulations.

Residual Current Device (RCD) - Rewrite and Check

RCDs are essential safety devices designed to protect against electric shock and reduce fire hazards.

Recent changes to the new building standards now mandate the use of RCDs on sockets, reflecting an evolving safety standard. Although not mandatory, we always strongly recommend installing RCDs throughout your entire property to ensure comprehensive protection for both your tenants and your property.

Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarms

Landlords are required to comply with regulations regarding the installation and maintenance of smoke and carbon monoxide alarms. This includes ensuring the presence of alarms on each storey of the property and in rooms with fixed combustion appliances, as well as promptly repairing or replacing faulty alarms.

Fixed Heating System Requirements

Meeting the Repairing Standard for rental properties involves providing adequate heating provision through a fixed heating system. This system must maintain specific temperatures under defined conditions, ensuring comfortable living conditions for tenants.

In conclusion, landlords play a pivotal role in ensuring the safety and well-being of their tenants by adhering to legal obligations surrounding electrical safety, smoke and carbon monoxide alarms, and fixed heating systems. By understanding and fulfilling these responsibilities, landlords not only prioritise tenant safety but also operate within the bounds of the law, fostering positive and compliant landlord-tenant relationships.

Your New Building Standards Expert.

If you need a hand figuring out all these new regulations and laws regarding your property, our team are more than happy to help.

With 30 years of experience and a team full of NICEIC-certified electricians, we are your go-to for any electrical repair needs in Edinburgh.

Just contact us on 0131 225 3205

Email us at connect@keithgunn.co.uk

Or use our enquiry form.

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