Landlords must fulfil certain legal obligations if they are to rent their property. Keeping tenants safe should be a landlord’s primary concern. Some of the most significant legal requirements are those that cover basic safety practices and equipment. We take a look at what landlords have to ensure to do regarding gas, fire and electrical safety. As well as looking at some of the detail relevant to UK legislation.

Relevant Legislation

A landlord’s legal safety requirements are legislated for by several different government acts, orders and regulations. Some of these include; Furniture and Furnishings (Fire Safety) Regulations 2010, The Housing Act 2004, The Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarm (England) Regulations 2015 and The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005.

Legislation can differ across the UK. The obligations detailed below are those for properties in England. For instance, the requirements for properties in Scotland are more extensive.

Gas Safety

In relating to gas safety obligations, landlords must make sure they follow these regulations:

  • There should always be an annual inspection of gas equipment undertaken by a Gas Safe-registered engineer.
  • Residents must be provided with a copy of the gas safety check record prior to them moving in, or inside 28 days of the inspection.
  • All gas powered equipment and appliances must be installed as well as maintained by a fully certified, Gas Safe-registered engineer.

Fire Safety

Regarding fire safety, landlords have a number of legal responsibilities:

  • A carbon monoxide alarm and detector needs to be equipped in every room there is a solid fuel burning appliance. These include devices such as coal fires, wood burning stoves etc.
  • The carbon monoxide alarm and detector must also be checked regularly.
  • Fire alarms and fire extinguishers must be fitted if the property is a House in Multiple Occupation (HMO).
  • As a minimum, one smoke alarm needs to be fitted on every floor of the property.
  • All furnishings, fittings and furniture provided by the landlord must be fire safe.
  • Residents must have access to escape routes at all times.

Electrical Safety

Electrical safety requirements are much more general and are often less of a complication for landlords. The legal requirements are:

  • The electrical system in the property must be fully functional and safe.
  • All electrical items and appliances must be safe.

In relation to rented property safety precautions, landlords are legally obliged to equip their properties with basic safety measures. The gas, fire and electrical obligations catalogued above represent the absolute bare minimum a landlord must provide in order to ensure their property is legally prepared for rental.

Need some help? Get in contact with us today.