A property management firm has urged Scottish landlords to take electrical safety legislation seriously.
Ross and Liddell says that landlords who fail to comply with changes to the Housing (Scotland) Act 2014 could seriously endanger the lives of their tenants.
Private landlords operating in Scotland are now responsible for ensuring that electrical safety inspections are carried out by registered electricians at least once every five years.
The ruling was originally enforced for new tenancies that began on or after December 1 2015 and as of December 1 2016; it now applies to all existing tenancies.
Landlords who do not have inspections carried out could be issued with a Rent Relief Order by the First-tier Tribunal for Scotland (Housing and Property Chamber).
A Rent Relief Order could reduce the rent paid by up to 90%.
“If an electrical safety inspection is not carried out, there’s no way of knowing how effective the appliances are and how well they function within a particular environment," warns Ann McMaster, lettings manager at Ross and Liddell.
“Leaving any problems undiagnosed could lead to electrical fires, which are a very immediate danger for tenants."
She reminds landlords that the inspections are inexpensive and can be carried out easily and effectively by a qualified electrician.
An electrical safety inspection has two parts – a portable appliance test and an Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR).
The person who conducts the check must be employed by a firm that is a member of an accredited registration scheme operated by a body recognised by the Scottish Government – this will usually mean that they are registered with NICEIC or a member form of the Electrical Contractors’ Association of Scotland (SELECT).