1. Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarms
Private sector landlords are required from 1 October 2015 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 (eg a coal fire, wood burning stove). After that, the landlord must make sure the alarms are in working order at the start of each new tenancy.
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.
A review is taking place for it to be legally compliant to also fit Carbon Monoxide Alarms in the property even if there is a not a solid fuel burning appliance in the property.
The Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES) will make it unlawful to let buildings which do not achieve an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of ‘E’ of higher from 2018.
This affects all domestic an commercial property in England and Wales. Poor energy performance is not limited to old or obsolete buildings. The landlords who take action now will avoid the rush for improvements later on.
The April 2018 deadline will apply to lease renewals as well as new lettings. If a lease has not be renewed by 2023, then MEES rules will kick in for all existing tenancy agreements. This means that even existing tenants should expect upgrades if performance falls short.
Our Energy Performance Surveyor can give help and advise to the Landlords that need to carry out improvements to their properties.
3. Right to Rent
- You must check all tenants can legally reside in the United Kingdom including British Citizens
- You need to do check 28 days before the tenancy if the tenant is only allowed to stay in the UK for a limited period of time
Under the Right to Rent, landlords can be fined up to £3,000 for letting their property to someone who isn’t allowed to rent property in England. However, Landlords are allowed to terminate tenancies within an appropriate time frame should they find a tenant is residing in the UK illegally.
4. Gas Safety Inspections
It is a legal requirement to have a Landlord Gas Safety Certificate in date on the start date of the tenancy and the Certificate must be renewed every year by carrying out a Landlord Gas Safety Inspection.
At present it is not a legal requirement to have an Electrical Inspection done but there is talk of this becoming an annual legal requirement as well.
If you rent a home to a private tenant, you can ask them to pay a deposit. Under the Tenancy Deposit Scheme, a landlord must protect their tenant’s money in an approved scheme.