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Smoke And Carbon Monoxide Alarm Legislation Warning

Smoke And Carbon Monoxide Alarm Legislation Warning

New Smoke And Carbon Monoxide
Alarm Legislation 
Comes Into Force
On 1st October

On October 1st 2015 the Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarm (England) Regulations are supposed to come into force meaning that landlords or their appointed lettings and property managing agents must install a smoke alarm on every floor of a rental property used for accommodation and fit Carbon Monoxide alarms in any room that contains a solid fuel burning combustion appliance, and all alarms should be in good working order.

However, there are calls for this legislation to be delayed due to lack of notice and ambiguity of the actual legislation.

The introduction of the new legislation is intended to save lives, we are already aware of the dangers that a potential fire in a residential rented property can cause, however, many landlords remain oblivious to the danger posed by Carbon Monoxide.

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MPPT Spotlight are focusing on Tenants this week with a series of articles on getting the best out of tenant

MPPT Spotlight are focusing on Tenants this week with a series of articles on getting the best out of tenants

Tenants Admit Having Problems With Landlords And Letting Agents

55% of tenants in the UK’s private rented sector (PRS) have experienced problems with their landlord or their appointed letting agents according to the latest research from the Association of Residential Letting Agents (ARLA).

The most common issue which affected 31% of PRS tenants was the length of time taken to fix problems in rental properties including issues with boilers, heating and electrical outlets.

Once a problem was raised, tenants have waited an average of 36 days for the problem to be fully resolved. However over 14% of PRS tenants never had their rental property problems fixed at all, according to the research.

18% of tenants surveyed also reported frustrating delays with landlords not replacing worn out fixtures and fittings on demand, including requests to replace old or damaged kitchen cupboards or tired and worn carpets.

14% of the tenants surveyed, felt that their complaints about repair issues were either ignored or brushed off by landlords or their appointed letting agents.

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A stark warning was issued to UK landlords from the AA’s Home Emergency Response service over boilers working harder in rental properties during the coming winter months

Research revealed today by the AA’s Home Emergency Response service shows that under 45% of landlords say they have a carbon monoxide (CO) detector installed in their rental property.

This is less than half the number who have a smoke alarm in their own home (97%).

Whilst the number of rental properties with smoke alarms is encouraging, there is still work to be done to bring this to 100%.

However, the proportion of PRS rental properties without CO2 detectors gives significant cause for alarm, and increasing the number of these could help arrest a worrying trend.

Analysis of figures from the Health and Safety Executive shows that in the last five years, the number of incidents of carbon monoxide poisoning has risen by 90%.

Although the number of fatalities has remained relatively stable, with provisional figures for 2010/11 showing 14 deaths, the number of non-fatal cases of carbon monoxide poisoning has almost doubled between 2006/07 and 2010/11 – from 184 to 343.

As carbon monoxide is colourless, odourless and tasteless it is very difficult to detect without a monitor. With the initial symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning similar to those of flu it is also often hard to identify when someone is affected, particularly in winter.

Carbon Monoxide detectors manufactured after November 2006 should conform to EN50291.

Tom Stringer, head of the AA Home Emergency Response service, said: “Carbon monoxide is known as the silent killer as it is so hard to spot. One of the main sources of carbon monoxide in the home is faulty gas appliances such as boilers. We would encourage all homeowners to get their appliances serviced, before the hard work of the winter really kicks in. They should also fit a CO detector which are relatively inexpensive but make sure they conform to the relevant British Standard. They should also be positioned correctly in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions. And as with any detector, they should be regularly checked to maintain their effectiveness.”

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