Landlords should be aware that the Housing (Scotland) Act 2014 introduced the requirement in Scotland for landlords to have an Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR) carried out on all electrical installations, fixtures and fittings within their rental properties. The requirement has been in place since 1st December 2015 for any new tenancies entered into but from 1st December 2016, all tenancies must have a valid EICR, a copy of which must be provided to the tenant.
The EICR lasts for 5 years and must include Portable Appliance Tests (PAT) for all electrical appliances within the tenancy supplied by the landlords. There is no requirement for a new EICR to be carried out when a new tenant moves in to the property, provided they are supplied with a copy of the most recent one carried out within the last 5 years, prior to moving in. The PATs will also be valid for 5 years, although landlords should take the advice of a qualified electrician, if a recommendation is given to test appliances more regularly.
The EICR should cover all electrical installations contained within the property and anything in the common area of the property that, directly or indirectly, serves the house and which the owner is responsible for maintaining (solely or in common with others).
An EICR must be completed by a competent person. This means that the person carrying out the EICR must be
- Employed by a firm that is a member of an accredited registration scheme operated by a recognised body such as SELECT, NAPIT or NICEIC
- A self-employed member of an accredited registration scheme operated by a recognised body, or
- Able to complete the checklist at Annex A of the Scottish Government guidance which can be found here.
Any problems with an electrical installation identified within the EICR, must be rectified immediately. This can be done by recording the work completed on a Minor Electrical Installation Works Certificate.
Failure to have a valid EICR in place may lead to the First-tier Tribunal (Housing and Property Chamber) issuing a Repairing Standard Enforcement Order (RSEO) ordering the landlord to have the EICR carried out. Failure to comply with a RSEO is a criminal offence.
If you require any further advice on your obligations as a landlord in Scotland regarding the Electrical Installation Condition Report feel free to contact a member of our private rented sector team.