Electrical Safety First responds to changes in London's letting laws

10 June 2014

Comment on changes in London's letting laws

Under 40 year old laws, Londoners – unlike the rest of the country - wishing to rent out their homes for less than three months, must get planning permission from their local council. Now the Government aims to change this through a measure in the Deregulation Bill.
Commenting on the announcement by Eric Pickles, the Minister for the Department for Communities and Local Government, on plans to end the rules preventing the short-term renting of private homes in London, Phil Buckle, Director General of Electrical Safety First, said:
“We appreciate the need to rationalise legislation that has outlived its usefulness but the safety of tenants must be a priority for Government.
“While it is right to update outdated planning rules, introducing mandatory, five-yearly safety checks of electrical installations in all privately rented properties – along with any electrical appliance supplied with them - should be considered at least as important, and as beneficial to homeowners as it is to their tenants”.
Editor’s Notes
1.    Half of all domestic fires in Great Britain – more than 20,000 each year - are caused by electricity.
2.     Each week in the UK, one person dies from an electrical accident [1] and well over a quarter of a million (350,000) are injured every year. [2]
3.    Research indicates PRS tenants are more likely to be at risk of electric shock than owner-occupiers, or those in social housing. [3]

1 ESC Core Dataset, derived from GB-wide DCLG fire statistics
2 ESC Core Dataset
3,  Research conducted by Ipsos Mori 25th June – July 2010
2 ESC Core Dataset
3,  Research conducted by Ipsos Mori 25th June – July 2010