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  • FIRST POST
    • Be Happy
    • By Be Happy 2nd Oct 17, 10:30 AM
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    Be Happy
    5-yearly electricity test certificates
    • #1
    • 2nd Oct 17, 10:30 AM
    5-yearly electricity test certificates 2nd Oct 17 at 10:30 AM
    Putting house on market and had survey done for Home Report (Scotland), really puzzled by one of the survey comments.

    Very good survey with only 3 minor items recommended for future repair or replacement. However, one of the items under 'Electricity', states:

    "It is recommended that all electrical installations be checked every five years to keep up to date with frequent changes in safety regulations. There is no recent test certificate available."

    We do have storage heaters, but this does not seem to apply to them as they feature in another category of Heating and Hot Water, where the report says "There are no obvious defects affecting the heating system."

    I've never heard of this requirement for test certificates?
Page 1
    • Ebe Scrooge
    • By Ebe Scrooge 2nd Oct 17, 11:22 AM
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    Ebe Scrooge
    • #2
    • 2nd Oct 17, 11:22 AM
    • #2
    • 2nd Oct 17, 11:22 AM
    It's not a legal requirement for a domestic property. It's just the surveyor covering his backside. Note that - in Scotland - a safety check IS required if the property is being rented out to tenants. But for a normal "family" home there is no legal requirement.


    Yes, it's probably sensible to get the electrics checked every so often, especially if they're quite old. And a purchaser may well pay for a check to be carried out - any defects could then be used to negotiate a discount.


    Worth pointing out - regulation changes are not retrospective. So a new installation would have to comply with the current regulations, but if the house was built 30 years ago, it would have had to comply with the regulations in force at that time. There is no requirement to bring it in line with current regs. Of course, you may choose to do so for your own peace of mind, or to increase the saleability of the house - but there's no legal requirement to do so.
    Last edited by Ebe Scrooge; 03-10-2017 at 7:57 AM. Reason: Clarification on rented property rules
    I may not know much about art, but I know what I like.
    • Strider590
    • By Strider590 2nd Oct 17, 12:58 PM
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    Strider590
    • #3
    • 2nd Oct 17, 12:58 PM
    • #3
    • 2nd Oct 17, 12:58 PM
    It's like everything else these days, not a damn given about safety, only about having someone to blame if anything goes wrong.
    “I may not agree with you, but I will defend to the death your right to make an a** of yourself.”

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    • Risteard
    • By Risteard 2nd Oct 17, 1:35 PM
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    Risteard
    • #4
    • 2nd Oct 17, 1:35 PM
    • #4
    • 2nd Oct 17, 1:35 PM
    Contrary to the incorrect information you have been given there is a legal obligation in Scotland to have a valid Electrical Installation Condition Report for a tenants property.
    • bris
    • By bris 2nd Oct 17, 1:48 PM
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    bris
    • #5
    • 2nd Oct 17, 1:48 PM
    • #5
    • 2nd Oct 17, 1:48 PM
    Contrary to the incorrect information you have been given there is a legal obligation in Scotland to have a valid Electrical Installation Condition Report for a tenants property.
    Originally posted by Risteard
    Nobody said anything about a tenants property so where is the incorrect information?
    • Ebe Scrooge
    • By Ebe Scrooge 2nd Oct 17, 2:09 PM
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    Ebe Scrooge
    • #6
    • 2nd Oct 17, 2:09 PM
    • #6
    • 2nd Oct 17, 2:09 PM
    Contrary to the incorrect information you have been given there is a legal obligation in Scotland to have a valid Electrical Installation Condition Report for a tenants property.
    Originally posted by Risteard


    I do know that - but the OP is talking about putting their house on the market and having a home report done. So the law regarding tenancy doesn't apply. And that's what I meant when I referred ( somewhat ambiguously, perhaps ) to "domestic" situations - I meant to imply that the law for landlords is different to that for ordinary housebuyers.
    I may not know much about art, but I know what I like.
    • Be Happy
    • By Be Happy 2nd Oct 17, 2:14 PM
    • 1,125 Posts
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    Be Happy
    • #7
    • 2nd Oct 17, 2:14 PM
    • #7
    • 2nd Oct 17, 2:14 PM
    Yes it's an owner occupied house, no tenants.

    Did feel that the surveyor was only trying to find fault, having given everything except 3 items a rating of 1 (no problem).

    Was only surprised that we'd never heard of 5-yearly testing. House was built in 1970s, but has been very well maintained and did, in fact, get a new fuse box fitted (with an electrical completion certificate) around 8 years ago when electric shower was installed.
    • Davesnave
    • By Davesnave 2nd Oct 17, 2:23 PM
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    Davesnave
    • #8
    • 2nd Oct 17, 2:23 PM
    • #8
    • 2nd Oct 17, 2:23 PM

    Did feel that the surveyor was only trying to find fault.....
    Originally posted by Be Happy
    Not really. It sounds like part of a copy and paste job he always does in the report and nothing personal.
    'A society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they'll never sit in.'
    • Ebe Scrooge
    • By Ebe Scrooge 2nd Oct 17, 2:24 PM
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    Ebe Scrooge
    • #9
    • 2nd Oct 17, 2:24 PM
    • #9
    • 2nd Oct 17, 2:24 PM

    Did feel that the surveyor was only trying to find fault
    Originally posted by Be Happy

    To be fair, he was probably just covering himself. He's not an electrician, and as such cannot really comment on the electrics. And the 5-year check is merely a "recommendation". It could be argued that it's not unreasonable to "recommend" an inspection. In fact, it's usually pretty standard on most reports.


    You say the house was built in the '70s, so the wiring is probably 40-ish years old ? As long as you've not noticed any problems ( e.g. circuit-breakers constantly tripping ) then there's no need for concern. And if you've had a new Consumer Unit fitted recently, I would say there's even less cause for concern - any problems would have come to light then.


    As I said before, the purchaser may wish to have a check carried out ( at their expense ) before completing the purchase. That's not unreasonable, but don't let them try and kid you that the house absolutely MUST be rewired just because it's old, and please can you knock £5k off the price to allow for this
    I may not know much about art, but I know what I like.
    • Heedtheadvice
    • By Heedtheadvice 2nd Oct 17, 10:59 PM
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    Heedtheadvice
    Regarding the 5 year check.....
    I presume Risteard was only clarifying the statement that, if taken by itself, is strictly incorrect and might lead to someone being misled if taken outside the context of this thread.
    The statement would be fine if the caveat "(except for rented property)" or some such were added?

    Can I suggest an edit to post 2 Scrooge?
    • Ebe Scrooge
    • By Ebe Scrooge 3rd Oct 17, 7:57 AM
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    Ebe Scrooge
    Regarding the 5 year check.....
    I presume Risteard was only clarifying the statement that, if taken by itself, is strictly incorrect and might lead to someone being misled if taken outside the context of this thread.
    The statement would be fine if the caveat "(except for rented property)" or some such were added?

    Can I suggest an edit to post 2 Scrooge?
    Originally posted by Heedtheadvice

    Fair point - original post edited.
    I may not know much about art, but I know what I like.
    • Risteard
    • By Risteard 3rd Oct 17, 9:13 AM
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    Risteard
    Autocorrect changed tenanted to tenants. I assumed the property was rented due to the five year interval suggested. Apologies. The fact remains that every electrical installation should be periodically inspected and tested.
    • Le_Kirk
    • By Le_Kirk 3rd Oct 17, 9:38 AM
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    Le_Kirk
    The fact remains that every electrical installation should be periodically inspected and tested.
    Originally posted by Risteard
    But what is a period? Five years is a period, ten years is a period. It's like saying regularly, so long as it is exactly every 10 years, it's regular. If there were to be a law, it should state a timescale so nobody could be misled or ill informed.
    • Risteard
    • By Risteard 3rd Oct 17, 10:17 AM
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    Risteard
    The initial interval is set by the installation Designer and subsequent intervals are set by the previous Inspector. These are displayed on a warning notice at the origin of the installation.
    • Heedtheadvice
    • By Heedtheadvice 3rd Oct 17, 5:38 PM
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    Heedtheadvice
    "These are displayed on a warning notice at the origin of the installation. "
    or maybe should be! Many a premise do not have them, in my experience!
    or have never had them when there was never a formal design as such!


    So, where does that leave us?
    • Warwick Hunt
    • By Warwick Hunt 3rd Oct 17, 7:47 PM
    • 390 Posts
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    Warwick Hunt
    The initial interval is set by the installation Designer and subsequent intervals are set by the previous Inspector. These are displayed on a warning notice at the origin of the installation.
    Originally posted by Risteard
    Why don't you just give a straight answer?
    • Risteard
    • By Risteard 3rd Oct 17, 9:21 PM
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    Risteard
    Why don't you just give a straight answer?
    Originally posted by Warwick Hunt
    It is a straight answer. As every installation is different it is hardly reasonable to expect me to state a particular period. That's why it is left to the Designer initially, and the Inspector subsequently (taking account of the use and condition of the installation). If you can't understand that then I doubt there's much more I can do to help you.
    • Risteard
    • By Risteard 3rd Oct 17, 9:24 PM
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    • 213 Thanks
    Risteard
    "These are displayed on a warning notice at the origin of the installation. "
    or maybe should be! Many a premise do not have them, in my experience!
    or have never had them when there was never a formal design as such!


    So, where does that leave us?
    Originally posted by Heedtheadvice
    Certainly "should be". (Actually, must be.)

    Even without a "formal design" it still needs to be there. Although you may not consider a typical domestic premises to be "formally" designed, the Electrical Installation Certificate still must be signed with a declaration for the Design! It is a design whether written down with lovely CAD drawings or not.
    • Ectophile
    • By Ectophile 3rd Oct 17, 9:43 PM
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    Ectophile
    "These are displayed on a warning notice at the origin of the installation. "
    or maybe should be! Many a premise do not have them, in my experience!
    or have never had them when there was never a formal design as such!


    So, where does that leave us?
    Originally posted by Heedtheadvice
    Let's face it, nobody actually has domestic installations checked every 5 years, or 10 years, whether there's a sticker or not. So long as everything works, and nobody's been electrocuted, why would they bother?

    One might be done whenever a house is sold, but not always even then.
    If it sticks, force it.
    If it breaks, well it wasn't working right anyway.
    • Risteard
    • By Risteard 3rd Oct 17, 10:36 PM
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    Risteard
    Let's face it, nobody actually has domestic installations checked every 5 years, or 10 years, whether there's a sticker or not. So long as everything works, and nobody's been electrocuted, why would they bother?

    One might be done whenever a house is sold, but not always even then.
    Originally posted by Ectophile
    Not nobody - although far fewer than should. It should be remembered, however, that many electrical installations are in an unsafe condition. Just because they appear to function does not mean that they are safe to remain in service.
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