As a landlord, you have certain responsibilities. It’s always important to remember that renting out property isn’t just a no-strings-attached way to make an income. First and foremost, you have a duty to your tenants because your property is their home. The safety of the property should be your priority, and making sure that it’s safe requires you to carry out a number of tasks. Safety checks and fixing any potential safety issues are a must if you want to ensure your property is habitable and safe. There are certain legal requirements you need to fulfil if you want to keep your tenants and property safe.
Gas Safety Checks
If your property has gas appliances, regular gas safety checks are essential. These should be carried out annually to ensure all appliances are working properly and there are no potential safety issues. All gas appliances should be checked, including boilers, gas heaters, gas hobs or ovens, and anything else that is powered with gas. These checks are typically not very expensive, so there’s no excuse not to ensure they take place every year. They’re quick too, so scheduling a time when they can be completed shouldn’t be too difficult, whether your property is currently tenanted or not.
Another crucial thing to test in your property is the electrics. Landlord electrical tests are a must, helping to ensure all electrical systems in the property are safe. These tests check things such as the fuse box, lighting, and plug sockets. If you want to ensure any electrical appliances in the property are safe, that will involve different tests. When electrical tests find any problems, these need to be fixed as soon as possible. That could involve minor work such as installing new plug sockets or ensuring grounding, or can occasionally require more extensive work. Landlords also need an EPC (electrical performance certificate) with a rating of at least E to rent out the property.
Fire and Carbon Monoxide Alarms
When problems do occur in the property, it’s vital that occupants are made aware as soon as possible. That’s why it’s important to have smoke or heat alarms, as well as carbon monoxide alarms for any gas appliances in the property. As well as being installed properly, these alarms should be tested regularly to check that they’re working as they should be. Alarms that are wired in can be more reliable as it means that they don’t have batteries that need to be changed when they run out.
Checking for Health Hazards
Landlords should also carry out checks for general health hazards in the home. This could include things like mould, damp, pests, or other hazards that could present a danger to the health of any tenants. If any problems develop while the tenants are living in the property, the landlord needs to take steps to address them quickly to make sure the tenants have a healthy environment.
Making your properties safe is one of the best ways you have to protect your investments. Meet your responsibilities as a landlord by carrying out essential safety checks.