Fire Safety and Regulations for Landlords

Posted on 11th March 2019 Fire safety law for letting houses

Ensuring the safety of a property you own or let is of the utmost importance. For domestic landlords of private properties and Houses of Multiple Occupation (HMOs) it is vital that you are aware of and comply with fire safety regulations in order to keep tenants safe.  

New legislation comes into effect this month that reasserts the need for landlords of domestic rented properties to fully adhere to existing laws, and strengthens tenants’ means of redress. The Homes (Fitness for Human Habitation) Act 2018 comes amid a number of new and revised laws which seek to improve building safety standards, improve fire safety standards and changes to private letting laws. 

Fire Door Safety

Fire doors contain fire and smoke for a defined period, slowing the spread and making fire easier to tackle. Fire doors are an integral part of fire containment systems and are a legal requirement for HMOs and private properties within a shared building – such as flats within apartment buildings. Fire doors only work when they are installed and maintained properly, as such they should only be installed by professionals and should be inspected on a regular basis to ensure they are in good condition. 

Since the Grenfell Tower tragedy the government has been undertaking a number of reviews, including an investigation into the fire door industry, and has issued guidance to building owners and occupiers. If you are concerned about the safety of fire doors in your property, we can provide an assessment and advise on the installation of correct doors and provide maintenance services, find out more here. 

Fire Safety Laws

Fire doors are a legal requirement as per the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005, this order asserts that landlords have a legal responsibility to keep their tenants and properties safe. Landlords should be aware of the various pieces of legislation that relate to this area, other laws include:

  • Smoke alarms must be fitted on every storey of a property, and carbon monoxide alarms must be fitted in any room containing a solid fuel burning appliance, such as a wood burning stove or coal fire.  
  • Gas safety checks must be carried out annually by a Gas Safe registered engineer on any gas appliances (such as boilers), and records issued to tenants, and held on file. 
  • Landlords of HMOs are required to provide fire blankets in kitchen areas and at least one fire extinguisher for each storey of a property. Escape routes must be kept free of combustible materials and clearly identified. 

This is by no means a complete list of the responsibilities of landlord, nor does it go into detail of each law. All of the legislation is enforceable by court, and every year hundreds of thousands of pounds worth of fines are issued and prison sentences are handed to landlords. Ignorance is not an excuse, so if you don’t know the laws make sure to read up and apply them to your properties. 

We supply and install fire doors and exits for internal and external use, manufactured to meet regulations to provide safe, secure homes. Our experienced teams are able to help advise on the best product for your property, book a free site survey online, visit our showroom or call 0800 0180304 today.