Landlords and letting agents are likely to have to meet the new Electrical Safety Standards by 1st April, despite attempts to push back the deadline.

Rented properties must comply with the regulations by the beginning of next month, requiring landlords to have electrical installations inspected and tested by a qualified and competent person, at least every five years.

In December, Propertymark warned the government that the huge task of ensuring all rented homes would comply in time was unlikely and that an “anticipated and widespread failure in compliance” would follow.

Lockdown blamed

It largely blamed the lockdown – slowing work and causing tenants to be reluctant to admit tradespeople, along with a shortage of qualified electricians. However, the trade body says it has had no indication from the government that the deadline will be extended.

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The National Residential Landlords Association says its members have also raised concerns about an inconsistent approach to the regulations being adopted by inspectors.

A spokesman tells LandlordZONE: “We have raised this with the government and are expecting the relevant professional and trade bodies to issue guidance to ensure a more consistent approach.”

It says it’s aware of cases where tenants have refused access to properties for landlords to comply with the regulations. “In such cases, landlords should ensure they record where they have attempted to gain access to the property but been refused it by the tenant.”

Timothy Douglas (pictured), Propertymark’s policy and campaigns manager, agrees that it’s important to document all activity relating to arranging, planning and scheduling work relating to compliance with electrical checks.

He adds: “Creating a paper trail of communication between tenants, landlords and electricians will safeguard agents against any enforcement activity where work could not be carried out during the pandemic.”


  1. The ruling to me is ambiguous. I have a vulnerable tenant who works from home. He hasn’t had his second vaccination yet and is very reluctant for a tradesperson to crawl all over the house. My electrician is very professional, but this test is very intrusive.
    I consider the safety and well being of my tenants comes first!

  2. …”this test is very intrusive.” Interesting. I had three properties completed yesterday. First one took half hour, second 10 minutes! The fuse boards were small, only five circuits on the second one. He needed access to fuse board, visually checked a few easily accessible plugs, visually checked a couple of light fittings and the bathroom light. £130 each. (nice rate for 10 mins work if you can get it!) Hardly intrusive. Remedial work might be, but not the test itself. Unless, my electrician hasnt done a proper job! How would I know? I have the pass certificates.

    • Yes same as mine but some very hard working electrician did take few hours .

      Mine one took 15 mins . I did nog mind if I passed . I was worried about the remedial work as the tenants were not v cooperative and I was worried if remedial work needed to be done

  3. I have had two properties checked in Littlehampton, £60 for the board and £20 each circuit, bringing the charge to around £140 each. Two men came and did a very thorough job taking about 3 hours per property if I recall correctly. Took all plugs off wall, checked light fittings, earthings and board and probably other things I did not see or understand. I received full official reports on both. Matt Hunt’s electrical checks make a mockery of the legal requirement for this check.

  4. I was surprised by how quick it was completed. I’d previously researched on forums the sort of time it was supposed to take but he insisted that the equipment he used was enough to measure faults, and his process was to code. I assume if it had of detected something, he would have taken the sockets off. As good practice I regularly check all sockets with a 17 test advanced socket tester anyway, and never flagged a fault.

  5. @Matt Hutt. A proper test on a 1 bed flat or maisonette will take approx. 4 hours. My electrician does a thorough job. This does not include any remedial work. The most any honest sparky can do in one day is 2 properties.

    Ask yourself do you want the test to identify issues and shortcomings in standard compliance, or do you want what is effectively a worthless certificate where safety is put at risk.

  6. Given that failure to comply could potentially invalidate any future notice, you must get this completed prior to 1st April….if you can find an electrician who is not already booked up completely with this work!

  7. The biggest cause of residential fires in uk is due to faulty or improper use of microwave ovens, these are not tested. Will the government bring in compulsory testing for appliances belonging to tenants to ensure their own safety and to protect the Landlords property?


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