From 1st October 2015 all residential properties must have a minimum of one working smoke detector/alarm on each floor of the property, which must be tested at the start of every tenancy.
As Landlords we really want to avoid fire and smoke damage to our properties and worse-case scenario of any harm coming to our tenants – so I know that you will already have fitted some form of smoke detector/alarm system in your rental properties.
From 1st October, the Deregulation Act states that ALL rental properties must have smoke alarms, not just new tenancies – so get your skates on and fit some good 10 year battery smoke detectors NOW.
Best practice is to fit an inter-connected, hard-wired system with battery back-ups in your properties. This means that the tenant is protected, and finds it awkward to disarm the detectors. Call your friendly electrician to fit a system for you. You won’t regret it.
If you want more details, please refer to LACORS (Local Authority Coordinators of Regulatory Services) which you can find details of at www.rla.org.ukl/guides/housing_act/lacors_fire_safety.shtml. This is a very detailed document which covers all types of rental properties including Houses of Multiple Occupation.
SO WHAT DO YOU DO WITH A CARBON MONOXIDE DETECTOR/ALARM?
These alarms detect Carbon Monoxide (CO) – the silent killer. From 1st October 2015 you will need to fit a CO detector/alarm in your properties with solid fuel burners, ie wood burning/multi fuel stoves or open fires.
It’s good practice to fit a CO detector/alarm in your rental properties which have gas boilers, hobs and fires too. Your tenants will see you as a proactive Landlord. Again you can ask your friendly electrician to fit a hardwired one for you, or just put up a battery operated one. In any case, ask your Gas Safe Engineer where the best place to fit one would be.
If you would like any further information or more reading, then go to www.rla.org.uk or www.landlords.org.uk and look up their guides.