Do Landlords really not know?

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A recent study by SpareRoom highlighted the need for landlords and letting agents to take a lead in tenant safety in the home.

The survey found a massive 7% of people admitted to removing the batteries from their smoke detection.   Why landlords aren’t fitting sealed units so batteries can’t be removed is an interesting question; and one where the answer generally lies in the fact that a sealed unit smoke detector may be a £1 more!  Whilst it might be about the money, what will happen if there is a fire in the home and the landlord is now required to demonstrate the detector was working? A tough ask if the batteries can be removed.

Another 16% of tenants didn’t know if the detection was working, and whilst it’s not rocket science to test smoke detectors, the law does not allow the Landlord or Letting Agent the flexibility to not ensure these detectors are working.

In addition a massive 49% of Landlords surveyed said they were not aware of the requirement to fit working smoke and CO detection; in a world where ignorance is no defence, and people’s lives are at stake, it seems reasonable that professional bodies in the Private Rented Sector still have work to do in getting the message out there.

Landlords and Letting Agents have an ever increasing responsibility to demonstrate they have taken care of tenant safety.  Whilst the Smoke & CO law is relatively new, its legal application has yet to be established, but if Landlords and Letting Agents don’t take proactive measures to demonstrate best practice now, it may be handed to them in the future, and may not look so pretty.

We have been supporting a number of property owners and property managers with Safire. Safire is a basic online tool that supports Landlords and Letting Agents through demonstrating tenant safety: it takes 10 minutes to complete and it’s a big step on the way to securing tenant safety.

Find more information at:

Source; SpareRoom

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