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MP takes on landlords re electrical safety

Skilled electricians could gain more work if an MP’s attempts to change the law governing electrical standards in private rented accommodation, is successful.

Mike Thornton, the MP for Eastleigh in Hampshire, wants landlords to be legally required to hold an electrical safety certificate for every home they rent out. Gas safety certificates are already mandatory for private rented accommodation.

Mr Thornton is taking up the challenge after being contacted by constituent Malcolm Parker. Mr Parker’s rented house in Netley Abbey had wires and sockets hanging from the walls and some of the electrics were close to the plumbing.

He told the Southern Daily Echo: “I raised it with my letting agent and I was told there was no regulation for it and that they did not have to be tested. I couldn’t believe that, but when I spoke to the Electrical Safety Council they confirmed it.”

In the private rented sector, currently only registered houses in multiple occupation need to hold an electrical safety certificate. However, landlords are not required to have evidence of when the electrics were last tested or hold a safety certificate for other privately rented accommodation.

MP Mr Thornton said the rising number of people now renting rather than buying a home meant that action to ensure electrical safety standards are high has become necessary. He said that current laws “are not up to scratch” and called for electrical safety certification to become mandatory.

The importance of using skilled and qualified electricians to carry out work becomes apparent when the number of incidents caused by faulty electrical work is taken into account.

According to the ESC charity, which is also campaigning for mandatory electric certificates for the private rented sector, half of all fires in the UK are caused by electricity.

  • Trade Facilities

    I think it is about time MP's have got involved in electrical safety. Its an important part of health and safety and every property should have a electrical safety certificate.