Electrical certificates of compliance and why you need one

What is an Electrical Certificate of Compliance?

In terms of Section 10 of the Occupational Health and Safety Act 85 of 1993, read with the relevant regulations, every electrical installation must have an electrical certificate of compliance. An electrical certificate of compliance certifies that a specific electrical installation is in accordance with the minimum standards of safety as set out in legislation and the South African National Standards publication number SANS10142-1. Therefore, all homeowners are required to have an electrical certificate of compliance for the electrical installation in their homes.

Who can issue an electrical certificate of compliance?

Only a qualified electrician who is a registered electrical contractor may inspect your electrical installation and issue a compliance certificate with regards thereto. To find out if an electrician is a registered electrical contractor, simply ask for his/her registration certificate from the Department of Labour. 

How long is an electrical certificate of compliance valid for?

For purposes of selling and transferring your property, you must ensure that your electrical certificate of compliance is dated within 2 years of date of expected registration.

This is set out in Regulation GNR 242 to the Act. In terms of these regulations, specifically regulation 7(1), “every user or lessor of an electrical installation … shall have a valid certificate of compliance for that installation … in respect of every such electrical installation”. Furthermore, subsection 5 states that “the user or lessor may not allow a change of ownership if the certificate of compliance is older than two years”.

Yet, if you have a certificate dated within 2 years but have since made significant alterations to the electrical installation of your home, a new or supplementary electrical certificate of compliance will need to be issued by a qualified electrician in terms of regulation 7(4).  

Who is responsible for the costs involved in obtaining a certificate?

The seller is responsible for the costs of obtaining a certificate. This includes paying the electrician for the inspection, paying for the certificate and paying for any issues relating to the safety of the electrical installation to be remedied by an electrician.  It is always wise to refer to the sale agreement to determine the respective responsibilities of the seller and purchaser. 

Why does the Conveyancer need a copy of the certificate?

As mentioned above, the law requires all homeowners to have an electrical certificate of compliance for the electrical installations in their homes. We request a copy to ensure that the homeowners are compliant in that regard. 

Furthermore, in instances where the purchaser applies for a bond, the bank will request a copy of the electrical certificate of compliance before issuing any guarantees for the purchase price. The conveyancing attorney must therefore send a copy to the bond registration attorneys once the purchaser has obtained final bond approval. 

Need a referral for an Electrician?

Should you require a referral to a reputable and qualified electrician to assist you with issuing an electrical certificate of compliance, do not hesitate to contact us, we are happy to assist.

References

Occupational Health and Safety Act 85 of 1993

Electrical Installation Regulations published in terms of Government Notice R242 in Government Gazette 31975 dated 6 March 2009

South African National Standards publication number SANS10142-1

Helpful resources

https://ecasa.co.za/

https://www.cch.co.za/news/what-do-you-need-to-know-about-home-electrical-certificates-of-compliance/