The electrical wiring circuits, switches and sockets must be in a safe condition, good working order and adequate for the needs of the tenants. It is important to ensure that the safety of the tenants is not compromised thorough defective or inadequate electrical wiring by arranging for regular inspections carried out by a competent electrical engineer or electrician preferably one who is approved by the National Inspection Council for Electrical Installation Contractors (NICEIC).
You should ask your electrician to produce a periodic inspection report for the electrical installation. Wiring over 15 years old will probably need annual inspections, although more recent wiring may require less frequent checks. Safecert recommends a short fixed wiring test annually to satisfy your 'duty of care' in these circumstances and a full periodic test every 5 Years.
It is not a legal requirement to have periodic inspections but it is recommended as a pro-active way to ensure that the installation is kept in a good and safe working order. If the electrical installation was allowed to fall into disrepair or become dangerous the council would be able to take enforcement action to ensure the work was carried out. Remember the landlord is still liable for any electrocution, injury or deaths as a result of faulty or damaged wiring, so your 'duty of care' must be satisfied.
Electrical equipment in furnished, privately rented accommodation which is hired out as part of the tenancy agreement is subject to the Electrical Equipment (Safety) Regulations 1994. These regulations require that electrical equipment must be safe to use. It applies to such things as lamps, televisions, vacuums, freezers, ovens, electric heaters and many, many more items.
Although there is no requirement to carry out regular testing in the event of an accident involving an appliance, or a complaint being made, the landlord will need to show that all reasonable steps were taken to ensure that the equipment was safe. These appliance tests or 'PAT' tests (portable appliance test) are available in and as part of our short electrical test to ensure all steps are taken to ensure the safety of the tenant.