Insight - landlords must prepare for changes to carbon monoxide alarms

January 31, 2022

As a landlord, an absolutely top priority should be to protect your property from potential risks and to shelter your tenants from injury and damage throughout their tenancy. 
One way of keeping the property and tenants free from health hazards is by staying up to date with the rules surrounding regulation in the lettings sector.
Rules for carbon monoxide and smoke alarms have recently been updated and help to inform landlords how they should use these alarms.
To help you keep your property and tenants safe, here’s all the information landlords need to know about upcoming changes to carbon monoxide alarms.
Carbon monoxide awareness
New findings suggest that many people are unaware of carbon monoxide poisoning. The research released by Gas Safe Register includes a sample of 3,000 UK adults. Only one in five (20%) participants believed they would be aware of a carbon monoxide leak in their home if they felt unwell, as opposed to extremely ill.
The results suggest that most people are unaware of the detrimental effects of carbon monoxide. Landlords could form part of this collective, meaning more need to be knowledgeable about this topic to ensure that their tenants are living in a safe environment.
With common knowledge of the impact of carbon monoxide exposure so low and rules surrounding alarms recently updated, it is essential that landlords stay informed to remain compliant and keep their tenants safe. 
According to the NHS, properties that have defective boilers, cookers, and central heating systems are in jeopardy of being exposed to carbon monoxide. 
Carbon monoxide alarms are a brilliant preventative measure that can alert people that this deadly gas is present.
Changes to carbon monoxide alarms for landlords
The Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarm Regulations 2015 state that all rooms that contain fuel-burning appliances must have a carbon monoxide alarm and one smoke alarm must be installed on every level in a property.
The Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities recently announced that smoke alarms must be fitted in all social housing. In addition to this, both social and private rented properties with fixed appliances, such as gas boilers, must have carbon monoxide alarms. 
Under these new rules, if alarms have a fault, landlords who form part of the social and private rented sectors must repair these right away. 
Although this sounds straightforward, it can be easy to miss the signs that there is a fault with an alarm. As a result, it’s strongly recommended that household alarms are regularly tested. Instances where the battery runs out, or becomes faulty over time, should not be overlooked. 
By tightening and extending these rules, the government aim to put a stop to carbon monoxide poisoning and make indoor environments far safer.
Landlords are responsible for making sure that repairs are carried out in a sensible time frame to avoid putting tenants in danger. 
By ensuring that your rental properties are well looked after, you will also keep your tenants happy and earn their trust. 
Here at Farrell Heyworth, we acknowledge that rules and regulations are constantly changing in the property industry. Therefore, we are currently doing all we can to help our landlords and tenants keep up to date with the latest changes.
For further guidance about carbon monoxide alarm rules or any part of the lettings process, do not hesitate to get in touch.
By registering with our My FH portal, you will be granted access to the latest industry information, available for you to use whenever is convenient for you. 
If you would like to start the lettings process, you can find out how much your property could be worth by using our free and instant online valuation.

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