Essential Safety Requirements For Landlords
Your responsibilities when renting out your property
Taking safety regulations seriously helps to protect both your tenants and our landlords. Here we outline the key safety regulations and landlord responsibilities when letting out a property.
Gas Safety Checks
The Gas Safety (Installation and use) Regulations 1988 require that all gas equipment is provided and maintained in a safe condition and inspected and certified annually.
The installation and appliances must be inspected annually by a Gas Safe registered engineer and a copy of the Gas Safety Record must be given to the tenant before the start of any new tenancy and also within 28 days of completion for subsequent checks. Gas appliances should be serviced in accordance with the frequency given in the manufacturer’s instructions and all repair and maintenance work during the tenancy must also be carried out by a Gas Safe registered engineer.
Meeting the fundamental needs of your tenants
Landlords are required to ensure that the electrical installation in their residential premises is tested and certified at intervals of no more than 5 years and also to ensure that any electrical appliances supplied are safe.
Energy Performance Certificate
The landlord should ensure that there is an adequate means of escape in case of fire and should assess the potential risks of fire in the property.
Requirements vary according to different types of property and there will be additional requirements for Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMO) *HMO – is a property occupied by three or more people who form more than one household, ie three people who are not all related or part of the same family. Some HMO’s will require a licence.
Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detectors
In accordance with The Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarm (England) Regulations 2015, a smoke alarm must be fitted on every floor of the let property and a carbon monoxide alarm is required in any room where solid fuel is burnt, such as wood, coal or biomas, including open fires.
A landlord must ensure that the alarms are in working order at the start of each tenancy and the tenant will be responsible for testing the alarms throughout the tenancy, replacing batteries where required and for advising the landlord of any fault with the alarm.
KEEP YOUR SAFETY LABELS ON
Furniture and Furnishings
All upholstered furniture supplied must comply with the fire resistance requirements of the Fire and Furnishings (Fire) (Safety) Regulations 1988 and amendments. The regulations apply to all types of upholstered seating (including bean bags, floor cushions and outdoor furniture), beds, pillows, bedheads, mattress toppers, loose and permanent covers for furniture. They do not apply to carpets, curtains or bed linen. Furniture manufactured before 1950 is exempt from the regulations. Furniture manufactured after 1988 must have the relevant safety label attached.
Making your water systems safe
Risk of Legionella
As part of the landlord’s legal requirement to ensure that the property is safe and free from health hazards, the landlord has a legal duty to consider, assess and control the risks of their tenant’s exposure to Legionella. Legionella bacteria can grow in water systems and exposure to this can result in serious illness (Legionnaires disease).
Whilst the risks from hot and cold water systems in most residential settings are generally considered to be low owing to regular water usage and turnover, the landlord does have a duty to assess the risk from exposure to Legionella to ensure the safety of their tenants.
It is important to review the assessment regularly in case anything changes in the system.
We're on your side
Working for you
Keeping up with constantly evolving regulations can be a daunting task. These rules are often amended and updated – sometimes at relatively short notice.
So not only is there a lot for landlords to know and understand, but if you don’t have a reliable way of staying up to date with changes, you could easily find yourself unknowingly falling foul of the law, which could be very costly, both financially and personally.
This is why, here at Gibson Honey, we ensure our team are highly qualified and fully informed on any legislation changes as they come into force.
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Have a property to rent?
If you have a property to rent, arrange a market appraisal with your local regulated expert agent.