Doors to an open walkway – Right to Manage?

Doors to an open walkway – Right to Manage?

11:23 AM, 9th March 2022, About 3 months ago 4

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We are applying for the right to manage – notice has gone into the freeholder and the managing agent has acknowledged that they know.

We had notices a month ago for an inspection of our flat (as in apartment not actually flat) doors to see if they complied with fire regulations. This will take place this week, our month notice ends on the 18th of March. We have also been warned that if the doors are not inspected, we will face a charge if the assessor has to return. Given that any works will be done under our management (hopefully) do we need to allow the management to continue with their plans up to the end date (18th).

Does anyone know what the regs are for doors to individual flats in a concrete building that opens out onto an open walkway? 1930’s build.

I have other flats in another 1930s block that have very similar doors, and originally we were told to replace them but then told that because they open out onto an open walkway they could stay – different management and a very different attitude as well.

I’ve had a trawl and can find nothing that specifically mentions doors to an open walkway.

Harlequin Garden



Comments

by Laura Delow

12:33 PM, 9th March 2022, About 3 months ago

My understanding is in blocks of flats where there is alternative escape available from each flat entrance along the open balcony or deck to two or more escape stairways, the separating walls
between the flats and access balcony or deck and the flat entrance doors are not required to be fire-resisting.
In flats with a single direction of escape to a single escape stairway, the separating walls between the flats and the balcony or deck should be fire-resisting up to a height of 1.1m from balcony or deck level. The flat entrance doors in these situations should be
self-closing fire-resisting doors.
See link https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_
data/file/1020410/Fire_Safety_in_Purpose_
Built_Blocks_of_Flats_Guide.pdf

by BernieWales

12:51 PM, 9th March 2022, About 3 months ago

Whether you need to allow access or not, depends upon the wording of your lease. I suspect you do - as 99.99% of leases provide for the freeholder and/or agents to have access for the purpose of inspecting for repairs and maintenance needs.

The RTM process won't change your obligation to provide access - just who you need to provide access for; i.e. RTMCo in addition to freeholder and/or agents.

by Ian Cognito

14:17 PM, 9th March 2022, About 3 months ago

Below is what I found to be useful in my situation regarding a front door onto a walkway. Note that in my case the flat was ground floor.

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/937931/ADB_Vol1_Dwellings_2019_edition_inc_2020_amendments.pdf

Page 15 - 2.10 Emergency escape windows and external doors
Page 19 - 3.1 Flats at ground level are treated similarly to dwellinghouses.
Page 116 - Final Exit

by Graham Bowcock

15:36 PM, 9th March 2022, About 3 months ago

Writing as a manager of blocks, the first thing to do (as ever) is read the lease to determine responsibility.

In my experience, however, front doors to flats are the responsibiltiy of the leaseholder, not the management company or freeholder. This means that the freeholder/mc cannot take action.

I gather that post Grenfell the Government has been trying to transfer responsbility in all cases to the freeholder, for the sake of consistency and ease of management, but this has not yet happened.

Building Regs are not retrospective, so only the rules in force at the time of construction apply.

In the blocks we manage we are reviewing flat doors for safety (following recent FRAs) and will work with flat owners where the doors don't comply. We will expect co-operation from flat owners, but enforcement may prove harder. They are obliged to provide access for inspections.

I suggest you agree to access for inspection; at leas there is then a record of the door condition.


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