Legal Obligations

At Equinox Estates & Management we always ensure that we are continuously updated with the ever changing legislation whilst managing a property. Below is a summary of the key legal responsibilities that you should strongly consider.

GAS

Landlords must comply with the gas safety (installation and use) regulations 1998 and carry out all necessary maintenance to gas appliances and gas pipe work in their property through a gas safety registered engineer. Landlords are legally responsible to arrange an annual gas safety check every 12 months and hold records for a minimum of 2 years.

More information can be found at: www.gassaferegister.co.uk

HOUSES IN MULTIPLE OCCUPATION (HMOS)

Under the Housing Act 2004, certain types of property may require a licence before they can be let. These properties are primarily Houses of Multiple Occupation (HMO) occupied by three or more people who are not related but, in certain areas, licences can be required for non-HMO property. It is your responsibility to determine whether you need a property licence and to obtain that licence.

ELECTRICITY

Under Electrical equipment safety regulations 1994, Landlords are to ensure that all electrical installations and equipment are safe and will not cause harm to the tenants) or the property.

More information can be found at: www.niceic.org.uk

SMOKE ALARMS

All rented properties must be fitted with a working smoke alarm on each storey that has living accommodation. The landlord (or representative) must ensure that the alarms are in proper working order on the day the tenancy starts. New homes built since June 1992 are required to have mains operated and interlinked smoke alarms fitted on every floor.
While the regulations do not tell landlords where to place the alarms, manufacturer instructions will usually recommend that the alarm is placed at head height between and in a circulation point.

CARBON MONOXIDE ALARMS

Landlords must ensure that there is a carbon monoxide alarm fitted in any room that is used partly or wholly as living accommodation which also contains any appliance which burns, or is capable of burning, solid fuel. This would include log and coal burning stoves and open fires, even if they are not normally in use, but does not include gas and oil boilers. If an open fireplace is purely decorative and not useable then it is not covered by the regulations.
Gas is not a solid fuel and so there is no requirement to fit one near a gas boiler.
While the regulations do not tell landlords where to place the alarms, manufacturer instructions will usually recommend that the alarm is placed at head height between 1-3 meters away from the solid fuel burning source.

ENERGY PERFORMANCE CERTIFICATE (EPC)

All rental properties are required to have an EPC which rates the energy efficiency and environmental impact of your property on a scale from A to G.

More information can be found at: www.rla.org.uk

LEGIONELLA

Revised Approved Codes of Practice (ACOP) and guidance on the control of legionella bacteria has been issued by the Health and Safety Executive which apply to residential property. Under the ACOP and guidelines, the Landlord must ensure risk from exposure to legionella at the property is properly controlled.