Landlords have only two weeks to fit smoke alarms in all rental properties.
In March 2015, the Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarm (England) Regulations 2015 were laid in draft which require landlords to install at least one smoke alarm on each story within their rental properties along with a carbon monoxide alarm in each room containing a solid fuel burning appliance (eg. a coal fire, wood burning stove, etc). These regulations have now finally been passed in parliament and Agents and landlords now only have until the 1st October 2015 to ensure that these regulations are adhered to.
When the regulations were laid before the House of Lords, the peers refused to rubber stamp them and said that there had not been nearly enough publicity about the regulations and that they were badly drafted – throwing into doubt whether they would be implemented in their current form.
However, after final scrutiny, the House of Lords decided to give the regulations the green light and the House of Commons also gave approval. Therefore, agents and landlords now have two weeks to comply with the regulations.
There has been much criticism from leading figures from within the industry who say that the timescale for landlords and agents to implement these changes is too tight.
David Cox, the managing director of ARLA, said: “Whilst ARLA is entirely supportive of the aims of the Regulations, we remain concerned that the Government has ignored calls from across the private rented sector to reconsider the timeframe for its implementation.
“Whilst these measures are entirely sensible, ARLA is concerned that landlords will not have enough time to comply with the requirements, as it is simply impracticable for letting agents, who may manage a huge amounts of properties, to gain access to the properties and to install these alarms on behalf of their clients in the timeframe allotted.
“On behalf of its members, ARLA has written to the Government on this issue to raise its concerns and suggested that all existing tenancies should be allowed to have until January 1 to comply.
Though some support has been given to these proposals, the government is still going ahead with the new regulations as planned along with the 1st October deadline.
The new legislation will be enforced by local authorities and if it is found that a landlord has failed to comply with these regulations, the authority can impose a fine of up to £5000.
If your property is managed by Taylor Clarke, we will be contacting the tenants within your property and taking the appropriate action after notifying you. However, if you are self-managing, then we strongly recommend that you double check to see whether your property complies.
If you need any further information, please click here to read a copy of the government’s official guide. Alternatively, please call us on 01684 879110