If you are a private landlord in Scotland the list of legislative requirements and regulations to comply with can be a daunting. With various safety, financial and legal requirements it can be an almost full-time job to ensure you tick all the boxes in the eyes of the local authorities. For some this process will be handled completely by a leasing agent and for others they will take on the task themselves. Either way though it is always a good idea to understand where you stand, after all it is your property with ultimate responsibility resting on your shoulders.
From an electrical standpoint there are several requirements and obligations a private landlord in Scotland must fulfil before they can welcome a tenant, and, in this blog, we’ll outline exactly what these are.
1. The EICR (Electrical Installation Condition Report)
The EICR report is perhaps the most important requirement for any landlord from an electrical perspective and is the document that will give your property a “clean bill” of health electrically. Essentially an inspection of your property it must be carried out by a contractor who has accreditation from a body recognised by the Scottish Government – NICEIC, NAPIT or a member firm of the Electrical Contractors’ Association of Scotland (SELECT).
The EICR inspection will evaluate everything about your property’s electrics from flow, power supply, connections, fittings, switches and fixed appliances like ovens or any built-in kitchen equipment.
Once passed the EICR report is valid for 5 years before it must be re-taken and every tenant must receive a copy of this report when they move in.
2. PAT (Portable Appliance Test)
PAT must be carried out on any non-fixed appliances or electrical equipment that is being left in the property for the tenants use and which is not covered by the EICR. Much like the EICR the purpose of PAT is to test the general electrical soundness of these appliances and ensure that these are safe for use in the property. If any equipment fails it must be either removed or replaced.
3. Smoke Alarms & Heat Detectors
Tenant safety is of course priority number 1 when renting out a property and the final electrical obligation deals directly with the biggest hazard of any home, fire.
Since legislation changes in 2015 it is no longer acceptable to install battery powered smoke alarms in a rented property with the new rules placing a higher standard for landlords to adhere to. Essentially the new rules state that:
- All living spaces (excluding bedrooms and bathrooms) and hallways must have a mains connected (with battery back-up) smoke alarm.
- These alarms must be interlinked i.e. if one goes off, all go off.
- And finally, there should be a separate heat alarm in the kitchen.
And that’s it – once the smoke and heat alarms are in you can sleep soundly at night knowing you’ve fulfilled your electrical obligations as a landlord and done right by your tenants.
At R&D Services we offer attractive landlord packages that will take care of all the above making the process as straightforward as possible, so if you’d like advice or a quote for your property please don’t hesitate to get in touch and speak to one of our team today.