EICR / PAT
The Scottish Government has finalised its guidance on mandatory electrical testing.
Although the term used by the government is “guidance” this is a statutory regulation which will come into force from 1st December 2015. All Scottish privately rented property covered by the Repairing Standard will require to comply as below, regardless of tenancy type.
Under the new requirement landlords will have to have fixed wiring (Electrical Installation Condition Report or EICR) checks carried out at least every five years. This will apply from the following dates: -
1st December 2015 - for any new tenancies entered into on or after this date (this includes current tenants signing a new lease)
1st December 2016 - for existing tenancies
The EICR report must include an appliance check report (a Portable Appliance Test or PAT). PAT checks are required on appliances provided by the landlord, but not those belonging to the tenant.
Anything that is not permanently connected to the electrical installation should be on PAT report. Everything in the property which uses the electrical supply must be on either EICR or PAT, unless it belongs to tenant.
It is advisable to have the checks carried out more frequently than five yearly if recommended by an electrician.
It is a requirement that landlords ensure that the electricians they use are competent. The electrician should be a member of NICEIC or SELECT.
EICRs and PATs carried out from 1st December 2015 must be documented on the forms specified on pages 12 and 14 of the guidance in order to be acceptable under the regulations. In addition, all appliances checked must have test labels placed on them by the electrician.
Enforcement of the electrical testing requirements are the responsibility of the Private Rented Housing Panel (PRHP). The PRHP can issue a “Repairing Standard Enforcement Order” and ultimately a rent penalty for non-compliance, which is a criminal offence.
Smoke Alarms in Private Lets
Revised Statutory Guidance for Scotland
In Scotland Private Landlords are already required to fit working Smoke alarms, see below for the details.
From 1st December 2015 Scottish Private Landlords will have to install working 7 year sealed battery Carbon Monoxide alarms in every room or inter-connected space where there is a fixed combustion appliance (excluding an appliance used solely for cooking). Further clarification will be announced closer to the time.
The Scottish Government has produced revised statutory guidance on the requirements for smoke alarms. Below we have detailed the main points relating to smoke detectors from the revised Domestic Technical Handbook.
1) One functioning smoke alarm in the sitting room which is frequently used by the occupants for general daytime living purposes (lounge, dining room)
2) One functioning smoke alarm in every circulation space, such as hallways and landings.
3) One heat alarm in every kitchen.
4) All alarms should be interlinked.
5) The number and position of alarms will depend on the size and layout of the house, but there should be at least one alarm on each floor.
6) The landlord should either install smoke and fire alarms that meet the standard set by building regulations or be able to justify why a lesser level of protection is appropriate in a particular property.
7) Some properties may be required to meet more stringent standards, in which case further alarms may be needed.
8) An alarm should be installed in accordance with the recommendations contained in BS5839 Part 6 and the landlord should ensure the alarms are regularly maintained in accordance with manufacturer's recommendations. The fitting of a hard-wired (mains powered) smoke alarm may require a building warrant and the relevant local authorities should be consulted.
9) Long life lithium battery radio interlinked alarms can now also be used to meet these requirements.