The Electrical Safety Council produced this useful (and - thankfully - not overwhelmingly complicated!) guide for landlords on electrical safety which we would encourage all landlords to download or check out.
We believe it gives an excellent overview of the basic legislation pertaining to eletrical safety and how it affects landlords. It covers such relevant areas as fire alarm systems, periodic inspections, portable appliances and certification.
Please click to view the 'Landlords Guide to Electrical Safety'.
As you may be aware, Cornwall and Devon have the highest level of radon in the UK.
Radon gas is widely recognised as being a contributory cause of lung cancer with anything up to 5% of such cancers being traced to residential radon exposure.
You may also be aware that radon is also included as one of the 29 potential health and safety hazards listed in the “Housing Health and Safety Rating System” used by local authorities to assess the standard of an individual property. (No 8 to be precise: “Radiation”). Therefore it is something that landlords need to make themselves aware of because it is their responsibility to ensure they assess their properties and minimise any potential risk to their tenants
Whilst health risks attributed to radon are largely due to prolonged exposure (usually much longer than a normal “student let” period!), it is of course entirely possible that some of the student properties in this area may be located somewhere with a high radon level.
In any event you may wish to check out some of the following websites with further information on the subject of Radon awareness:
Energy Performance Certificates
From 1st October 2008 rental properties with a new tenancy in England and Wales are required to have an “Energy Performance Certificate” (EPC). Example
You can check whether your property has a valid certificate at www.epcregister.com
They look very similar to the energy labels found on domestic appliances such as washing machines and refrigerators. They will show the energy efficiency and environmental impact of your property on a scale from A – G and also include a list of recommendations for improving the energy efficiency of the property.
They will need to be provided by an accredited “Domestic Energy Assessor” (DEA) who will visit the property and make the assessment based on the age, construction and location as well as the current facilities such as heating system, insulation, double glazing etc.
A list of local DEAs can be obtained from www.hcrregister.com
Costs of getting a EPC will vary from assessor to assessor and may well range from £40 - £120.
More detailed information can be obtained in the attached guidelines from the Communities and Local Government Department. PDF Guidance.
Properties with tenants who have exclusive use of a bedroom and share other facilities AND who have INDIVIDUAL tenancy agreements (i.e. not a joint/severally liable agreement) do not require an EPC.