Statutory regulations

As a Landlord you must be aware of the following Regulations. These laws are in places to protect you, your tenant and your property. We are here to offer you advice and our management team are on hand to undertake any works required to ensure that your property complies with these Regulations.

Property Management Services

The furniture and furnishings (Fire) (Safety) regulations 1988 and (amendment) regulations 1993

It is a criminal offence to let a property with upholstered furniture or soft furnishings containing foams that cannot be proven to comply with the above Regulations. The Regulations require that specified items must be match, and cigarette resistant and carry a permanent label. This permanent label must display the heading “CARELESSNESS CAUSES FIRE”

These Regulations apply to the following items:

  • beds, headboards, mattresses and bed bases
  • sofa beds and futons
  • sofas, armchairs and footstools
  • nursery furniture
  • garden furniture suitable for use indoors (deckchairs and parasols would not therefore be included)
  • scatter cushions and seat pads
  • pillows
  • padded seats
  • loose and stretch furniture covers

These Regulations DO NOT apply to the following items

  • bed covers, including mattress protectors and duvets
  • curtains
  • carpets
  • furniture made before 1950 (However, any reupholstered pre 1950 furniture must comply.)

Electrical equipment (safety) regulations 1994 and plugs and sockets etc (safety) regulations 1994

Landlords are responsible for providing instruction books for all items of electrical equipment and for ensuring that all electrical appliances within the property comply with the above Regulations. You should also ensure that all electrical installations are safe and have them checked regularly. Further to this, all plugs must have a safety sheath and the correct fuse. All sockets must comply with the current regulations which state that they should have an “off” switch and must be flush with the wall.

Electrical equipment (safety) regulations 1994

Landlords have a responsibility to ensure that all electrical equipment and appliances must be maintained and in a safe condition which could not cause danger throughout the tenancy. New electrical equipment must carry a CE marking, affixed by the manufacturer.

Portable appliance testing (PAT)

The PAT test is the electrical safety testing of portable electrical equipment. It consists of a visual inspection and various electrical tests carried out using test equipment. Appliances that have passed the test are deemed to be safe to use until the next test date. A sticker is attached to the equipment indicating pass or fail and next test date. The interval between tests is normally 12 months.

Electrical installation condition reports (EICR)

Landlord electrical certificates are an important part of ensuring the safety of your tenant and being able to prove that you have taken reasonable steps to do so. It is recommended that you have a full electrical inspection carried out every three to five years dependent on previous inspection advice. This investigates the state of electrical wiring throughout the property and thoroughly checks the safety of the electrical installation. Once this is done you will be issued with an ‘Electrical Installation Condition Report’. It will declare if the property meets current safety standards and highlight any areas that need attention; such areas will be given an order of priority.

Gas safety (installation and use) regulations 1998

It is a criminal offence to let a Property with gas appliances, installations and pipework that have not been checked by a Gas Safe registered engineer. No tenancy can commence until a valid certificate is in place. At the commencement of the tenancy the Gas Safety Certificate (GSC) will need to be given to your Tenant as documentary proof of your compliance with these Regulations. The GSC will need to be renewed at 12 monthly intervals and a further copy provided to the Tenant within twenty eight days.

Part “P” building regulations (electrical safety in dwellings)

Since 1st January 2005 the above Regulations came into force requiring qualified personnel to carry out certain electrical work at the property. To ensure compliance with the Regulations you should only use a competent person to carry out any electrical work at the property. This person needs to be registered with an approved self-certification scheme.

Smoke alarms

Under the Building Regulations 1991 the Law requires that all newly built properties from June 1992 and Houses of Multiple Occupation (HMO) must have mains fitted smoke alarms with battery back-up. If battery operated smoke alarms are fitted to the property the Landlord must ensure that the alarms are in working order at the start of a tenancy.

Since October 2015 under the Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarm (England) Regulations 2015, all premises occupied by a tenancy must be equipped with a smoke alarm fitted on each storey of the property where there is a room used wholly or partly as living accommodation which can include stairways. The Landlord is obliged to ensure the alarm is in proper working order on the day the tenancy begins and remains in proper working order.

Carbon monoxide alarms

It is a legal requirement for Houses of Multiple Occupation (HMO) to have a carbon monoxide alarm fitted. However, we advise all Landlords to consider the installation of alarms to protect the occupier and help prevent any legal action being taken against a Landlord. If we are managing the property we will arrange for an alarm to be fitted at your expense.

Under the Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarm (England) Regulations 2015, when the premises are occupied under a tenancy they must be equipped with a carbon monoxide alarm fitted in any room which is used wholly or partly as living accommodation and contains a solid fuel burning combustion appliance. The Landlord must ensure that the alarm is in proper working order on the day a new tenancy begins and remains in proper working order.

Oil, LPG, sold fuel appliances and wood burning stoves

Oil, LPG, solid fuel appliances and wood burning stoves should be serviced and safety checked annually. Wood burning stoves installed from 2011 must have an installation certificate and a carbon monoxide alarm fitted. A copy of the installation certificate must be given to us.

Energy performance of buildings (certificates and inspections) (England and Wales) regulations 2007

Since 1st October 2008 a prospective tenant of a residential property has to be provided with an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) free of charge at the commencement of marketing. EPCs must be provided by accredited energy inspectors and last for ten years. The Energy Efficiency (Private Rented Property)(England and Wales) Regulations 2015 mean that, from April 2018, private non-domestic (and domestic) Landlords must ensure that properties they rent in England and Wales reach at least an EPC rating of E before granting a tenancy to new or existing tenants.

Legionella risk assessment

Landlords of residential accommodation have responsibilities for combating Legionnaires’ Disease. Health and safety legislation requires that Landlords carry out risk assessments for the Legionella bacteria which cause Legionnaires’ Disease and thereafter maintain control measures to minimise the risk. Landlords have a duty to ensure that the risk of exposure to tenants is properly assessed and control measures introduced. This applies to houses or flats with domestic type water systems. Provided the risk assessment shows that the risks are insignificant and the control measures are being properly managed no further action would be necessary. It is important, however, to keep the assessment under review periodically in case anything changes to the system.

Statutory repairing responsibilities

Sections 11 to 16 of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1985 state that a Landlord must:

  1. Keep the structure (including the drains, gutters and downpipes) and the exterior of the Property in good order and repair).
    b. Keep the appliances for supply of gas, electricity and water in good repair.
    c. Keep the appliances for supply of space heating and water heating in good repair. Keep the sanitary appliances in good repair.

The Landlord is obliged under the terms of the Tenancy Agreement to ensure that necessary repairs are carried out.