New legislation: Landlords required to install smoke and carbon monoxide alarms

Housing Minister Brandon Lewis announced new measures in March to protect tenants. Regulations for landlords in England were to be brought into line with building regulations for new builds in the UK, and will require the installation of working smoke and carbon monoxide alarms in their properties.

Landlords will be required to install smoke alarms on every floor of the property, and test them at the start of every tenancy.

Carbon monoxide alarms will be required in rooms perceived as high risk, such as those where solid fuel heating systems are installed.

Under requirements introduced by the Housing (Scotland) Act 2014, landlords must have carbon monoxide (CO) detectors fitted in their properties by 1st December, 2015. From this date landlords must have a long life battery OR mains powered detector in any space which contains a carbon based fuel appliance (excluding cooking appliances) e.g. a gas/oil boiler, gas/oil fire, wood burning stove or open coal fire. There should also be one in any bedroom or living room which is bypassed by a flue.

Detectors must comply with BS EN 50291-1:2010+A1:2012 and, where hard-wired or wireless installations are adopted, applicable European directives. There are rules on the positioning of detectors including that they should in most cases be 1-3 metres from the appliance, 30cm from any walls (if ceiling mounted) and 15cm below ceilings (if wall mounted). CO detectors have expiry dates printed on them and must be replaced before that date is reached.

The new law is part of a wider government drive to ensure public safety and it is hoped it will prevent up to 26 deaths and more than 600 injuries a year.

At Cairn carbon monoxide and smoke alarms tests are just some of the checks that we regularly carry out for student accommodation requiring HMO license’s as part of the license application.

We and our team work hard to ensure that we meet statutory standards as normal practise and have a dedicated team of contractors on hand. You can find out more on the maintenance section of our website here. As well as risking the safety of tenants those who fail to install smoke and carbon monoxide alarms could face sanctions.

If you have any questions about changes to regulations, landlord services or any other matter you can contact us several ways. Through our website, via email, or by calling us on: 0141 270 7879.

In addition you’ll find us on Facebook,Twitter, and LinkedIn where our staff will be more than happy to answer any questions you may have.

(Updated August 14th 2015, originally published on March 19th 2015)