May 6, 2015

Legislation Changes for Private Landlords

Category: General
Posted by: kdeadmin

Legislation changes for private landlords

If you own one or more properties that you rent out privately, you'll be affected by recent changes to legislation. Here's a summary of what's changed, and what you need to do.

What's the new legislation?

The government now require private landlords to install correctly working smoke and carbon monoxide alarms in all their UK properties, a move which Housing Minister Brandon Lewis believes will help prevent up to 36 deaths and 1,375 injuries a year.

Landlords need to fit alarms that meet current British safety standards (currently BS 5839-6:2013 for smoke alarms and BS EN 50292:2013 for carbon monoxide alarms).

What do landlords need to do?

Smoke alarms must be fitted on each floor of the property, and tested at the beginning of each new period of tenancy. High risk areas, such as rooms with open fireplaces, will also need to be fitted with a carbon monoxide alarm. The legislation will bring older private rental properties in line with the existing building regulations that govern houses built after 1992.

The new law will be enforced by Local Authorities from 1st October 2015. They'll be able to serve a remedial notice on landlords they have reasonable grounds for believing haven't complied, and to force them to take remedial action to protect tenants. The negligent landlord could be liable for a civil penalty charge of up to £5,000 if they don't comply with the remedial notice.

The legislation may be subject to further changes, so check back on the KDE Ltd website regularly for the latest news. Although the changes only currently relate to private rentals, we'd also advise that landlords of social housing fit suitable alarms to protect their tenants.

In addition to portable battery-operated units, you could also consider fitting hard-wired alarms in your rental property for extra peace of mind. If you'd like to talk to us about fitting smoke or carbon monoxide detectors, we're always happy to offer advice on 01928 711444.