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The Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998

Landlords must ensure that all gas appliances and flues in a property undergo an annual gas safety check. This should always be carried out by a suitably qualified Gas Safe registered engineer. Once this has been done, you'll be given a Landlord Gas Safety Record with details of all the checks that were carried out. By law, a copy of your Landlord Gas Safety Record should be given to your current tenants within 28 days of the gas safety check.

Electrical Safety Standards in the Private Rented Sector (England) Regulations 2020

The electrical safety standards for the private rented sector in England came into force on 1 June 2020 and applies to all new tenancies from 1 July 2020 and all existing tenancies from 1 April 2021. The regulation sets out new rules for landlords to ensure all fixed electrical installations are safe and maintained correctly. Landlords must ensure the electrical installations in their rented properties are inspected and tested by a qualified and competent person at an interval of at least every 5 years. By law, a copy of your Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR) should be given to your current tenants within 28 days of the electrical safety check being conducted.

Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarm (Amendment) Regulations 2022

The Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarm (England) Regulations 2015 came into force on 1 October 2015. The Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarm (Amendment) Regulations 2022 will come into force on 1 October 2022. From that date, all relevant landlords must:

  1. Ensure at least one smoke alarm is equipped on each storey of their homes where there is a room used as living accommodation. This has been a legal requirement in the private rented sector since 2015.
  2. Ensure a carbon monoxide alarm is equipped in any room used as living accommodation which contains a fixed combustion appliance (excluding gas cookers).
  3. Ensure smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms are repaired or replaced once informed and found that they are faulty.

The Furniture and Furnishings (Fire Safety) Regulations 1988 (as amended in 1989, 1993 and 2010)

The regulations set levels of fire resistance for domestic upholstered furniture, furnishings and other products containing upholstery. To reduce risk of fire, all furniture must meet safety standards and display the appropriate labels. These labels should be displayed on both new and second-hand furniture. Landlords should only purchase furniture and furnishings that carry a permanent label and/or ensure that the furniture complies with BS7177.

The Immigration Act 2014 – Right To Rent Checks

The immigration Act 2014 introduced the concept of 'right to rent' to the private rented sector in England. This requires landlords and agents to check the immigration status of their prospective occupiers at the outset of the tenancy. Originally, failure to comply could lead to a fine, however as of 1 December 2016, the Government introduced additional penalties and offences relating to right to rent. Landlords now face potential imprisonment for failure to check the occupier's right to rent status, so it is even more important it is done correctly every time.

Energy Performance Certificates

Government regulations require all rental properties to have an EPC rating of E or higher before being let to tenants. If your property has an EPC rating below E, but is eligible for an exemption under the government's guidelines, you can also apply for an exemption via the government website.

The government had proposed that new tenancies would need an EPC rating of C by 2025 (or 2028 for existing tenancies), but these changes have been scrapped. EPC rules for landlords remain unchanged for now – still requiring a minimum of an E rating.

Security Deposit Registration

Most tenancies are assured shorthold tenancies (AST) and as a landlord or letting agent you must protect the tenancy deposit with a UK government-approved deposit protection scheme. A landlord of an AST who doesn’t protect the deposit can be fined and it can make it much more difficult to end the tenancy. Deposits must be returned in full at the end of the tenancy, unless there is a dispute about damage caused to the property or unpaid rent.

Legionella Risk Assessment Reports

Landlords must ensure that the water supply must be working properly to protect tenants from catching Legionella disease. While a professional Legionella risk assessment is not a formal legal requirement, it's often the best way to ensure your water is safe to drink. A professional risk assessment will cover all water systems in your rental property.

There are further pieces of legislation which needs to be adhered to when letting a residential property. At Roebucks our lettings specialists are trained to stay up to date with changing legislation and property our landlords and their properties.


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