GAS SAFETY CERTIFICATES:
If you are a landlord letting a property equipped with gas appliances you need to understand and comply with the law relating to gas safety.
If you let a property, you must make sure that pipe work, appliances and flues provided for tenants are maintained in a safe condition. You need to have a gas safety check every year. A Gas Safe registered engineer must carry out the safety check in your properties. This record confirms the Gas Appliances have been checked and are safe. We are unable to rent a property without one.
You must give your tenants a copy of the gas safety record within 28 days of it being carried out or before they move in.
You should also make sure your tenants know where to turn off the gas and what to do in the event of a gas emergency.
Remember you must keep a record of each safety check for two years
PLEASE CONTACT ADVANCE LETTINGS TO ARRANGE YOUR GAS SAFETY CERTIFICATE.
EPC (ENERGY PERFORMANCE CERTIFICATES)
Since October 2008 EPC’s are a legal requirement for all properties to rent. The certificate provides energy ratings similar to what you now see on new fridge/freezers, cars etc... it provides emissions and recommendations for future improvements. EPC’s are valid 10 years.
ADVANCE LETTINGS CAN ARRANGE THIS AT A REASONABLE COST WITH ONE OF OUR MANY SUITABLE QUALIFIED ENERGY INSPECTORS.
Please note we are unable to let a property without an EPC.
THE FURNITURE & FURNISHINGS FIRE (SAFETY) REGULATIONS:
These regulations aim to improve safety by requiring all furniture and furnishings in rented properties to pass the “match & cigarette tests”. All upholstered furniture with a filling material such as sofas, chairs, pouffes and mattresses MUST HAVE A PERMANENT SEWN IN LABLE that confirms it satisfies the regulations.
Any furniture that does not bear such a label should be removed immediately and replaced with compliant furniture. Carpets and curtains are excluded and furniture manufactured before 1st January 1950 does not need to comply with the regulations, as apparently the flammable materials were not in use prior to 1950. This exempts period or antique furniture.
The safety of consumer goods is controlled by the requirements of the Consumer Protection Act 1987. These requirements extend to “consumer goods” supplied in the course of business – in this case rented accommodation. The landlord is responsible for ensuring that safety rules are complied with – in particular that all electrical appliances must be safe for use. Advance Lettings recommend that all electrics and appliances are checked by a suitably qualified electrician.
The Regulations came into force on 1st October 2015.
The regulations apply to properties in England and are intended to reduce the risk of injury or death caused by smoke or carbon monoxide in the private rented sector.
The Building Regulations 2010 require all new-build properties (built on or after 1st June 1992) to have hard wired smoke alarms installed on at least each storey of the property and the installation of a carbon monoxide alarm in all properties when a solid fuel heating system is first installed. However, there has been no legislation in place requiring the installation of smoke alarms on every storey, or older non licensed properties, or any requirement where the system was installed before 1st October 2010.
The new regulations require landlords in the private rented sector in England to ensure that their rented property, which is occupied, is equipped with a smoke alarm and a carbon monoxide alarm the details of which are set out below.
What alarms are required?:
Where a property is occupied under a tenancy on or after 1st October 2015 landlords must ensure that:
A smoke alarm is installed on each storey of the premises on which there is a room used wholly or partly as living accommodation; and
A carbon monoxide alarm is installed in any room of the premises which is used wholly or partly as living accommodation and contains a solid fuel burning combustion appliance.
The regulations do not specify what type of alarms should be fitted or where they should be fitted. Landlords should choose alarms appropriate for their properties.
Government guidance advises that ‘manufacturer’s instructions should be followed when installing alarms but in general smoke alarms should be fixed to the ceiling in a circulation space i.e. a hall or a landing and carbon monoxide alarms should be positioned at head height either on a wall or shelf approximately 1 to 3 meters away from a potation source of carbon monoxide.’
A room is usually classed as living accommodation if it is used for the purpose of living or where a person spends a significant amount of time. The regulations state that a bathroom or lavatory would be living accommodation.
Who is responsible for checking alarms?:
Landlords are required to carry out checks to ensure that each alarm is in proper working order on the day the tenancy begins if it is a new tenancy which started on or after 1st October 2015. The regulations state that ‘a tenancy begins on the day on which under the terms of the tenancy the tenant is entitled to possession under that tenancy.’ (4(3))
Government guidance advises that tenants should take responsibility for their own safety and test all alarms regularly to make sure they are in working order. It would be advisable to include a clause within the tenancy agreement to confirm that the tenant is responsible for testing the alarms and replacing any batteries as required during the tenancy.
Advance lettings can arrange for these to be fitted by an independent company at a reasonable cost.
An inventory should be carried out and a schedule of condition be prepared to avoid any dispute at the end of a tenancy.
You will need this in the event of a dispute as all of the tenancy deposit schemes will favour the tenant should one not be available.
ADVANCE LETTINGS CAN ARRANGE FOR THIS TO BE CARRIED OUT BY AN INDEPENDENT COMPANY AT A REASONABLE COST.