Housing standards and enforcement

Minimum safety requirements

Gas safety

Landlords must get all gas appliances checked annually by a registered engineer and obtain a gas safety certificate.

It is recommended that carbon monoxide detection is provided in all rooms containing a gas appliance.

A copy of the gas safety certificate must be provided to all assured shorthold tenants at the property whose tenancies began on or after 1 October 2015.

Further gas safety information is available from the Gas Safe Register.

Electrical safety

All landlords must maintain the electrical system in safe working condition and free from hazards. Enough electrical sockets in suitable locations should be provided to minimise the need for extension leads.

The electrical installation in Houses of Multiple Occupation (HMOs) must be checked for safety every 5 years by a registered electrician. We recommend all privately rented homes are checked at a similar frequency.

Further information is available from Electrical Safety First:

Smoke and carbon monoxide alarms

All rental properties must have a working smoke alarm on each storey. We strongly recommend that mains-powered, interlinked alarms are used in all rental properties. Further information is available from GOV.UK

All rental properties must have a carbon monoxide alarm in any room used as living accommodation where solid fuel is used (eg coal fire or wood burner). We strongly recommend that a carbon monoxide alarm is provided in all rooms containing a gas appliance.

Landlords of HMOs have additional fire safety responsibilities and should complete a fire risk assessment.

Furniture, furnishings and portable appliances

All furniture and furnishings supplied in rented properties must be clearly marked with a fire safety label demonstrating compliance with the necessary fire resistance standards. If you rent out the property after the labels have been lost, you should either have the furniture re-tested or replaced.

Any portable electrical appliances supplied in rented properties should be safe. HMO landlords should make regular checks for signs of damage/scorching and test for electrical safety. Further information on PAT testing is available from the Health and Safety Executive.