Landlords have a legal duty to ensure that their rental property and any electrical equipment provided, is safe before a tenancy begins and throughout its duration. The Housing (Scotland) Act 2006 details this requirement in Section 13 of the Repairing Standard. A house or Flat meets the Repairing Standard if:
- The installations in the house for the supply of water, gas and electricity and for sanitation, space heating and heating water, are in a reasonable state of repair and in proper working order (subsection (1)(c))
- Any fixtures, fittings and appliances provided by the landlord under the tenancy are in a reasonable state of repair and in proper working order (subsection (1) (d))
The Electrical Equipment (Safety) Regulations 1994, also impose an obligation on a landlord to ensure that all electrical appliances left as part of a let property are safe and are made in line with safety measures, meeting safety objectives.
More recently however, the Housing (Scotland) Act 2014, which received Royal Assent on the 1st of August 2014 is set to increase landlord obligations in respect of electrical safety inspections with the addition of a new requirement after Section 19 of the Housing (Scotland) Act 2006, Section 19A – Duty to ensure regular electrical safety inspections – will state that the landlord must ensure that regular inspections are carried out for the purpose of identifying any work which relates to installations for the supply of electricity and electrical fixtures, fittings and appliances (subsection (1)(a)) and is necessary to ensure that the house meets the repairing standard (subsection (1)(b)).
In line with the Electrical Safety Council a landlord will have complied with the duty if the electrical inspections are carried out at no less than five yearly intervals (subsection (2) (a) and (b).
Any tenant under a new tenancy commencing on or after 1 December 2015 must be provided with a copy of an Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR) before the tenancy commences.
Any tenant under an existing tenancy at 30 November 2015 must be provided with a copy of an EICR by 1 December 2016 unless their tenancy ends before that date.
An EICR completed on or after 1 January 2012 completed by a competent person is acceptable, whether or not it in includes a description and location for appliances inspected. However, to be acceptable all EICRs completed on or after 1 December 2015 must have a Portable Appliance Test (PAT) record attached to it that shows their description and location and a certificate for any remedial work that has been done.