Landlord Guide - Legal Regulations

 

Legal regulations

There are strict regulations relating to the fire resistance of soft furnishings that are included in the letting. There are some exemptions but a breach of these regulations can result in criminal proceedings. If you propose including soft furnishings we will advise you on the appropriate regulations. The regulations make it clear that there must be no non-compliant furniture on any part of the property including garage and attic.

Under current safety regulations it is the Landlord’s responsibility to ensure that the gas and electrical systems and appliances at the property are maintained in a safe condition and serviced by a qualified contractor. A gas safety check must be carried out and a safety record issued.

The property must be a safe environment for tenants and we will assist you in checking all safety aspects of the property prior to the tenant moving in.

If any appliances are included in the letting it will be the Landlord’s responsibility to ensure they are safe when the property is let. The law may also require the landlord to repair or replace these should they become defective. We advise excluding very old or defective appliances such as cookers from the letting. Plugs and socket regulations apply and we must ensure that all plugs, leads and sockets are checked for safety and correctly fused before a tenant takes possession.

Where electrical appliances are included we are obliged to supply safety instructions and we will arrange this. We insist that all properties we let include smoke detectors at the rate of at least one per floor, unless the property has a full fire alarm system. These must be checked and working when a tenant takes possession, but our Tenancy Agreement places the liability for on-going testing on the tenant.

If the property has working open fireplaces we recommend that you arrange for these to be regularly swept. We can arrange these matters on your behalf.

A tenant or other party may ask the local authority to carry out an inspection of the property under the Housing Health and Safety Rating System. The local authority has significant powers to require property owners to make the property safe. The system is based on whomever may be considered the most vulnerable person to occupy the property. We will explain how these regulations may affect you. We will also assist you with outcomes of such an inspection.

However, this is not included in our standard fee structure and we will charge fees based upon an hourly rate applicable at the time if you require our assistance.

There are definitions about what constitutes a house (residential property) in multiple occupation.

We will advise you about this as there are legal consequences in letting a property to sharers.