New smoke and carbon monoxide regulations

co and smoke alarmsAll private sector landlords are now required to have at least one smoke alarm installed on every storey of their properties and a carbon monoxide alarm in any room containing a solid fuel burning appliance, e.g. a coal fire, wood burning stove, etc. The Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarm (England) Regulations 2015 were finally approved by Parliament and came into force, as planned, on 1st October 2015.

The regulations state that the landlord must make sure the alarms are in working order at the start of each new tenancy and regular testing takes place to ensure they are in good working order throughout the tenancy.

Whilst the new regulations don’t specifically stipulate that carbon monoxide alarms are required for gas appliances, this point always provokes a debate as they can emit carbon monoxide. A direct quote from the guidance notes states that “we would expect and encourage reputable landlords to ensure that working carbon monoxide alarms are installed in rooms with these also.”

The requirements will be enforced by local authorities who can impose a fine of up to £5,000 where a landlord fails to comply with a remedial notice.

The Department for Communities and Local Government have issued an explanatory booklet with guidance notes that is designed to help landlords further understand and comply with the new regulations.

As part of our inventory package we are able to provide video of each alarm within the property showing it being tested as proof that they are in working order prior to a new tenancy starting, another tick in the box for video inventories!

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