Potential Qualified Electrician Shortage for next phase of 5 Year updates

Potential Qualified Electrician Shortage for next phase of 5 Year updates

 

It is rare for me to “scaremonger”, but following a recent webinar, I thought it would be worth flagging that the next round of EICRs (Electrical Reports) will soon be due as they only have a life span of five years. The regulation came into effect back in 2020. According to the experts there was a shortage of electricians last time, which meant that many landlords could not get the report, let alone the repair work, done in time.

Apparently, this time round, there could be even less electricians available as many are already overstretched at present (a lot are already doing more carbon neutral work with electric charging points and solar panels), without the added avalanche of EICRs coming down the line.

In addition, first time round, councils were much more lenient with the 28 Day Deadline for repairs and upgrades being completed. Given that councils can issue an on the spot fine and considering their current financial plight; many may be tempted to issue these fines after the due date and not be so engaging with landlords who are struggling to get the reports/repairs done in time.

It could be worth considering getting reports done earlier by a few months and certainly booking your electricians earlier than the due date. There will be three benefits to doing this:

  1. You`ll get a fairer price, because a shortage of people capable of doing the work will result in escalating prices as we get closer to the “log jam” time.
  2. Getting it done earlier will prevent you going over the expiry date, with all of the related stress and potential fines that could be imposed.
  3. If work is required, you will have time under the current report to get it done, if needed.

Make sure that the person doing the work is both competent and qualified to sign the report off. Legally an Unsatisfactory report is acceptable so long as the required repair/update work is done and signed off, so there is written evidence that everything is okay. However, the best practice is always to make sure you have a Satisfactory Report, so there can be no queries later.

It is interesting to note that there can be different levels of acceptable and therefor satisfactory, that can be related to the report. It will be at the judgment of the engineer – so experience of doing these reports will be very important. It will be his/her opinion taking into account the use of the property and the number of inhabitants plus any risk factors such as disabled residents.

Lastly, if access is denied, do make chronological diary notes of when and why, so you have the evidence required to defend any action by the council.

If you have any queries on this, please feel free to call me.