Electrical Safety First comments on the Tenancy Reform Bill
Commenting on the Tenancy (Reform) Bill – which despite Government and cross-party support has failed to get through to its next reading - Philip Buckle, Director General of Electrical Safety First, commented:
“It’s disappointing that this Bill has failed. One in eight renters have chosen not to ask for repairs to be carried out, or challenged a rent increase, due to fear of eviction. Yet dangerous electrics, in particular, can pose a serious risk, with almost half of all domestic fires in the UK (around 20,000 each year), caused by electricity. Our proposals for regular, mandatory checks of the electrics in the Private Rented Sector are a cost-effective and simple way to protect both tenants and properties.
“However, we are pleased that Sarah Teather MP, who sponsored the Bill, recognised our contribution to this issue - and that the debate showed an increasing understanding within Parliament of the dangers of electricity, particularly for those private tenants who are families with children.”
- Over 9 million people – and growing - are now living in England’s private rented sector (PRS).
- In the last 2 years, almost 50% of the growth in the PRS has been from families with children but research indicates that, while 16% of private tenants’ experienced electrical hazards during 2013-14, this figure increased to 20% for tenants with children.
- Electrical Safety First is campaigning for mandatory, five yearly checks on electrical installations and supplied appliances in privately rented homes.
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 YouGov 20014, base 4,544 private renting English adults. Research jointly commissioned by Shelter and British Gas.
 Electrical Safety First Core Data Set.
 From the report Home Improvement: talking poor electrical safe in the private rented sector, produced by Electrical Safety First and Shelter.