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FACT FILE - Gas Safety in Rental Properties

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FACT FILE - Gas Safety in Rental Properties

Danger of Wood burning Stoves in the news - January 2013 More on this here

May 2010

The Health & Safety Executive have launched a new website which gives all sorts of up to date information on Gas Safety

More Information on this here

A guide to landlordsí duties: Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998 Click on image above left for more information. Also important for tenants to read this

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Criminal Record for Scottish Landlord

The health and safety Excecutive continue to prosecute landlords for nreaching the requirements of the Gas safety Regulations. In the latest case a Glasgow landlord, Mohammed Aslam was convicted fined £800 after an investigation found that a gas fire in a house that he owned failed a smoke spillage test and was not properly sealed to the vall - nor had it been maintained within the proceeding 12 months. Anyone who carries out work on gas appliances must be on the Gas safety Register. Source NLA UK Landlord July/August 2011

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Poor fire safety standards in Wales

A landlord in north Wales has been fined £5,015 for failing to bring a block of flats he owned up to a suitable safety standard. North Wales Fire and Rescue brought the case against Mr D C Lloyd who owned a medium sized block of flats in Saltney Ferry. Mold Magistrates heard that Mr Lloyd had not complied with an enforcement notice to carry out work that would ensure the property achieved a suitable fire safety standard. He was found guilty of failure to carry out a suitable and sufficient fire risk assessment, failure to adequately maintain the fire alarm system and failure to adequately maintain the emergency lighting system. Source NLA UK Landlord July/August 2011

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Hefty fine for letting hazardous house

A landlord has been fined £30,000 and given a six month suspended sentence for letting a dangerous and sub-standard house in Coventry. A statutory notice was served by Coventry City Council officials following an inspection of the property which revealed numerous hazards including severe damp, mould, electrical problems and inadequate cooking facilities. The landlord Steven Boote, was also reported for failing to provide a gas safety certificate.

Mr Boote pleaded not guilty to three separate charges (failing to comply with gas regulations and failing to comply with an improvement notice) when he appeared in court recently. He told the magistrates that his contractors were refused access to carry out the repairs. However the court heard that at no occasion were any appointments made with the tenant and that visits were unannounced. The magitrate said it was perfectly reasonable for the tenant to be out when these unannounced attempts were made. Dharminder Brainch prosecuting officer for Coventry City Council, said Mr Boote had shown a total disregard for his tenant.s safety.Source NLA UK Landlord July/August 2011

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Portsmouth Landlord neglects gas safety duties

Another landlord, Peter Brown of Waterlooville, was fined £11,500 recently for putting tenants' safety at risk. Portsmouth City Council had responded to a complaint about damp and mould at the property in Portsea and also discovered there were bo gas safety records in place.

The case went to Portsmouth Magistrates after Mr Brownfailed to provide the records for gas appliances at the property. Pleading guilty to breaching Gas Safety Regulations and failing to comply with an improvement notice. Mr Brown was fined £11,500 and ordered to pay costs of £4,500. He was also ordered by the court to provide a gas safety check record for the property within two months.Source NLA UK Landlord July/August 2011

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Capita replaces Corgi from April 2009

For almost twenty years, Corgi has been in charge of making sure that homes meet gas safety standards with its registered engineers. In April of 2009, the Capita Company will take over for the Corgi Company as the official gas safety protocol company for the Health and Safety Executive office (HSE).Gas Safe Registerô will be the new name and the official stamp for gas safety in Great Britain. Capita has signed a ten year contract with the Health and Safety Executive (HSE)

The name carries with it a simple message; gas, safe, register Ė keep gas safe.As well as being the identity for the register, Gas Safe Register will be used for a range of gas safety campaigns, so you will start to see it more and more Ė itís here to stay. Gas Safe Register will be held in trust by the Health and Safety Executive and will remain the official stamp for gas safety in Great Britain. More information at www.GasSafeRegister.co.uk

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The Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations, which took account of the special concerns relating to privately let property, were introduced in 1994. These were subsequently superseded by the current regulations, the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998. The duties of landlords are contained in Regulation 36

One of the most dangerous gases is carbon monoxide (CO). In particular, CO is generated by the combustion of wood or coal (in all its forms) fires and in the flue gases of gas appliances (town gas, natural gas or bottled gas).

The Gas Safety Regulations set out certain prescriptions about the types of gas appliance that may be fitted in sleeping accommodation as well as bathrooms or shower rooms. These appliance prescriptions apply to all accommodation, not only the private rented sector. Landlord duties for LPG appliances are the same as for natural gas.

Landlordsí duties apply to a wide range of accommodation, occupied under a lease or licence , which includes, but not exclusively:

  • residential premises provided for rent by local authorities, housing associations, private sector landlords, housing co-operatives, hostels
  • rooms let in bed-sit accommodation, private households, bed and breakfast accommodation and hotels
  • rented holiday accommodation such as chalets, cottages, flats, caravans and narrow boats on inland waterways.

A Landlord has a duty under the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998 to arrange maintenance by a Gas Safe Register -registered installer for all pipe work, appliances and flues, which they own and have provided for their tenants use. The Landlord must also arrange for an annual gas safety check to be carried out every 12 months by a Gas Safe Register - registered installer. The Landlord must keep a record of the safety check for 2 years and issue a copy to each existing tenant within 28 days of the check being completed and issue a copy to any new tenants before they move in.

Landlords who use agents to manage properties need to ensure that the management contract clearly specifies who is responsible for carrying out the maintenance and safety check duties and keeping associated records. If the contract specifies that the agent has responsibility then the same duties under the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998 that apply to a landlord apply to the agent.

In this situation an agent must arrange maintenance by a Gas Safe Register -registered installer for all pipe work, appliances and flues, which the landlord owns and provides for the tenants use. You must also arrange for an annual gas safety check to be carried out every 12 months by a CORGI- registered installer. You must keep a record of the safety check for 2 years and issue a copy to each existing tenant within 28 days of the check being completed and issue a copy to any new tenants before they move in.

The HSE (Health and Safety Executive) strongly recommends the use of CO alarms as one useful precaution to give tenants advance warning of CO in the property.

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Gas Appliances in Bedrooms

Where a gas appliance is installed in a bedroom, only the following types are permitted:

  • Non room-sealed appliances of less than 14 kilowatts output (this applies to typical domestic gas room heaters and gas water heaters), if they are fitted with a device that switches them off when a dangerous level of fumes is building up (often referred to as an oxygen depletion sensor); most gas fires now marketed have such a device.
  • Room-sealed appliances (balanced flue).
  • Instantaneous hot water heaters of a room-sealed type, or fitted with a dangerous fumes sensor which will switch them off.

Gas Appliances in Bathrooms

Only a room-sealed appliance can be installed in a bathroom or shower room.

Important

In many sitations where there is a 3 bedroom semi detached house with separate lounge and dining room, these types of properties are often let out to 3 sharers. The dining room or lounge will therefore often become the 4th bedroom and could easily have a gas fire or back boiler and before a letting takes place the gas inspector should be advised of the situation to ensure it is safe.

Checks that should be done between tenancies

According to the HSE a Landlord or an agent must visually check the property to see if the departing tenant has either removed appliances unsafely, or alternatively left behind their own appliance, which should either be removed or checked for safety by a Gas Safe Register registered installer. The opportunity should be taken to clarify appliance ownership prior to renting the property again.

Before the property is let again the Landlord /Agent needs to ensure that all appliances are safe and have an up to date landlord's gas safety certificate (a copy of which needs to be given to the new tenant); it is also good practice to arrange for the pipe work to be inspected and tested for soundness.

Further information at HSE Website

A guide to landlordsí duties: Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998 Click on image below to download

This leaflet is aimed at landlords and explains some of the main requirements of the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998. It also gives guidance on how to comply with them.

The leaflet will also be of interest to tenants, making them aware of landlordsí duties. Every year about 14 people die from carbon monoxide poisoning caused by gas appliances and flues which have not been properly installed or maintained.

Many others also suffer ill health. The Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998 specifically deal with the installation, maintenance and use of gas appliances, fittings and flues in domestic and certain commercial premises.

They place duties on certain landlords* to ensure that gas appliances, fittings and flues provided for tenantsí use are safe. These duties to protect tenantsí safety are in addition to the more general ones revised 03/09 that landlords have under the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 and the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999.

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Gas Safety Register Confusion - 30th July 2009

In the Pain Smith Landlord and Tenant Blog the following appeared on the 30th July 2009.

Gas Safe Register appear to be advising on their helpline that a landlord is obliged to obtain a new gas safety certificate every time a tenancy is entered into, notwithstanding any current gas safety certificate that is in place. This is not the position.

The Landlord (or the Agent if it forms part of the terms of business) is required to arrange the annual preparation of a gas safety certificate and ensure that throughout any tenancy a valid gas safety certificate is in place at all times.

An annual gas safety check must be carried out by a Gas Safe Registered engineer. A record of the safety check must be kept for 2 years. A copy of the certificate must be issued to each existing tenant within 28 days of the check being completed, and in any event before the commencement of a tenancy.

This is consistent with the advice as given on the Gas Safe Register website

 

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Back to Property Information

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See also

Landlords Letting Advice Guide Click Here

Housing Act 2004 Click Here

Inventories in UK Rental Market Click Here

Tenancy Deposit Scheme (TDS) UK Click Here

Condensation Problems Click Here

See also

How to present your rental property for letting Click Here

How not to present your rental property for letting Click Here

Buy to Let UK Click Here

Buy to Let Europe Click Here

 

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See Landlord fined £5,500 after double carbon monoxide poisoning in Hackney, London - October 2008

and

Many UK Landlords facing fines - Blog March 2010

and

Husband and wife fined over gas safety breaches - September 2010

and

Gas Safety in rented accommodation March 2011

and

Personal safety for Letting Agent and Estate Agents




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