Whether you have invested in a property solely for the purpose of renting it to tenants, or you have found yourself in a situation in your life where you can become a landlord, then one of the most important things that you will need to do before you put the property on the market available to rent is ensure that health and safety standards are met. Whether you are planning to rent the property out long-term or short-term, furnished or unfurnished, to a single tenant or family or as a house of multiple occupation (HMO), there are various health and safety standard you will need to meet for your property to be legal and suitable.
Before you can rent your property out to tenants, it’s important to ensure that the electrical system is safe. Landlords are legally required to get an Electrical Safety Certificate every five years. Getting an electrical certificate such as the EICR means having a qualified electrical check all electrical outlets and wiring in the home. Along with looking for any hazards that you will need to rectify and make safe before renting out the property, it will also ensure that your house meets the minimum energy efficiency standards. If it doesn’t, you will need to make improvements before finding a tenant.
Gas Safety Certificates
If your property has a combustion appliance like a combi boiler, gas heating such as a gas fire, a gas hob and oven, or a wood-burning stove, then all of these can produce dangerous carbon monoxide. Because of this, it’s important for landlords to ensure that they get a Gas Safety Certificate before renting the property out and ensure that this is done on an annual basis. It should be carried out by a registered Gas Safe Engineer.
There are various alarms that are worth getting as a landlord for your property before renting. Some are legally required, such as fire alarms and a carbon monoxide detector in properties with any kind of gas or combustion appliance. Fire alarms should be provided on each floor and in a fairly central location where possible. They can be hard-wired, or battery powered, and tenants should be provided with instructions for testing them. CO detectors should be placed close to any appliances that can cause dangerous levels of CO, such as a boiler or wood burning stove.
It’s important for landlords to ensure that tenants are safe in the home that they pay to rent. Part of this involves ensuring that there are suitable locks on all doors that lead to outdoors. A deadlock is usually the best option to go with. Along with this, you will need to ensure that all of the windows have working locks and keys. It is a good idea to install windows with a ‘catch’ that can allow tenants to open them a small way but lock them in place.
Whether you’re a buy to let investor or have a spare property you want to earn some money from, it’s important to follow all health and safety guidelines carefully when renting to tenants.January 11, 2023