Congratulations! Whether you are planning a house move, or have just moved, it is an exciting time. Sometimes between the preparation, packing ….and unpacking it is easy to have little time to think about something as mundane as electrical safety of your property. How can you be sure that the electrics in the house you are moving to are up to standard or those ideas you have for improving your new home in future are possible? That’s where an electrical installation condition report can really help.
An EICR, or electrical installation condition report, is an assessment of the electrics in a property by a qualified professional. We all use our electrics every day without thinking about it, but most of the wiring that powers our homes and offices can’t be seen. The EICR report is designed to remedy this by highlighting dangerous problems that might never have been found otherwise or provide peace of mind that all is well. The results of the inspection form the basis of the report, and are classified as either unsatisfactory (C1/C2) or satisfactory (C3), as below.
Unsatisfactory outcome of an EICR
Satisfactory outcome of an EICR
In this blog, we look at the circumstances in which you might need an EICR, and at some of the reasons you might choose to have an inspection of your property.
While most electricians would agree that regular checks are the best way to maintain your electrics, in some cases it’s also a legal requirement. It depends on what you use your property for – the rules for private homeowners and landlords are different.
There is no legal requirement for private homeowners to check the condition of their electrics, but it is recommended every ten years (more frequently, if you have a swimming pool). This is because over time, things like wiring can deteriorate – in fact, old wiring is most often to blame for electrical fires in the home. The EICR is there to pick up on any faults that could cause electric shocks or fires.
Landlords have a legal obligation to ensure that they have an up-to-date electrical installation condition report (EICR) for their rented properties. New regulations , that came into force in June 2020, require landlords to have the property inspected by an authorised person every five years. A copy of the report must be provided to the tenant, and the local authority, if requested. Should new tenants move in at any time, they must also be provided with a copy of the current EICR.
If you’ve had electrical work done on your property, then you should have been issued with an Electrical Installation Certificate (EIC) by your electrician at the time – this is proof that the work conforms to part P of the building regulations. When you sell your house, you will be asked to provide this certificate as part of the conveyancing process.
However, there are scenarios in which you might be missing this certificate. For example, if you did the work yourself, or your electrician didn’t issue the right paperwork. Your buyer will inherit this problem, and they could be made to re-do the work by the local authority. In cases such as these, the seller has several options.
A final option is to arrange an electrical installation condition report. A qualified assessment of the electrics at the property, should put the buyers mind at ease that the work is safe. And it may suffice in place of an EIC, if the local authority did ever ask to see proof that it meets building regulations.
If you’re buying a house and you want complete assurance that the electrics at the property are safe, then you could arrange an electrical installation condition report, yourself. Even where a seller has proof that any work carried out was certified at the time, this is only part of the story. It doesn’t tell you about the safety of the remaining electrical installation. This is particularly important if the house was built before electrical safety was added to government building regulations.
In addition to the usual safety checks, at EMCAL Systems we also offer a free consultation with every EICR on properties in Sheffield, South Yorkshire, and the surrounding areas. One of our qualified electricians will spend twenty minutes with you, to walk round the property and offer an expert opinion on:
Things like energy efficiency aren’t included in an EICR inspection, but recommendations on how to improve the property’s existing installation, could save you money on your electric bills and reduce your carbon footprint.
An electrical installation condition report can only be provided by an electrician who is qualified to the right standards. Our team has the skills and experience needed to carry out your EICR, and put right anything that is flagged as a fault.
You can expect the process to take between three to four hours, depending on the size of your property and the number of circuits that need testing. Alongside a basic visual check, we will also need to turn off the electricity for a short time while we test the parts of your wiring that we can’t see.
The final report will include photos, imagery, and a covering letter with details of any damage, defects, or deterioration we find. If the electrical installation is deemed unsatisfactory, then you will need to put right the faults detected before you have your property re-inspected – we can help guide you through this process step-by-step and complete the work for you.
There are circumstances in which you might need to ensure the safety of your property’s electrics, and others where you just want that peace of mind. If you still have questions about whether an electrical installation condition report, is right for your property, we can advise you. Call or email our team to arrange a visit from one of our electricians – whatever your reasons for arranging an EICR, we are here to help.
 Electrical Safety Standards in the Private Rented Sector (England) Regulations 2020.