Hazard Awareness Notice – how to respond?

by Readers Question

10:31 AM, 9th July 2015
About 3 years ago

Hazard Awareness Notice – how to respond?

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Hazard Awareness Notice – how to respond?

I own a flat in London which I rent out – and recently received a Hazard Awareness Notice from the council relating to some fire safety issues. This came with a schedule of required works and a thinly veiled threat to upgrade the notice to an Improvement Notice if nothing is done.hazard

Some of the proposed works seem reasonable – some less so – and I need to get back to the council with a ‘time frame’ for the works.

My question  – Is there any room for negotiation on the schedule of works?
ie – can I go back to the council and say ‘ill do this and this, but not this’ – or will that open up the real risk of them upgrading the notice to IN?

One more wrinkle – I’m planning on selling the flat soon, so don’t want this hanging over the deal.

Many thanks for any input.

John



Comments

Neil Patterson

10:33 AM, 9th July 2015
About 3 years ago

Have you asked your friendly neighborhood fire station/ fire safety officer?

They can be very helpful regarding what is required.

Luke P

12:30 PM, 9th July 2015
About 3 years ago

Get them to point to the legislation.

Often the LA interprets it wrong and sometimes add 'desirables' to their wishlist rather than sticking to what is purely mandatory.

Paul Franklin

16:39 PM, 9th July 2015
About 3 years ago

Each council will have a slightly different approach to how they do things. It's probably best to pick up the phnoe in the first instance to discuss what you consider to be reaonable and what you don't and why. Yes in my experience there is room for negotiation. Second opinions from other professionals may help your case in that regard though. I understand there's always the option to appeal these sort of notices to the property tribunal if it goes that far too.

J T

20:50 PM, 9th July 2015
About 3 years ago

Many thanks for these responses. The building management company have shown the schedule to their regular surveyor and he has said that one request in particular (installing a sprinkler system) is highly unusual in these situations.
Im rather hoping to avoid any escalation to tribunals or wrangling over legislation. I think Ill give them a call and hope for a reasonable response.

thanks again

John

Luke P

15:01 PM, 10th July 2015
About 3 years ago

Let us know how you get on (my prediction is you'll be buggered off).

J T

13:17 PM, 17th August 2015
About 3 years ago

Luke P - you were not wrong.
The council are not giving an inch.
The building management are not happy about the prospect of having sprinklers in a first floor flat. We've had three fire protection companies say they wouldnt recommend sprinklers - and next month the whole building is having an upgrade to a grade A alarm system. Still nothing.
Also - its my understanding that with a Hazard Awareness Notice - there isnt even an appeal procedure.

Its all gone a bit Kafka.

Thanks for all your advice though

Luke P

13:58 PM, 17th August 2015
About 3 years ago

I rarely am 😀

Try and get the fire authority for your area to meet with you at the property. They like that sort of thing and will tell you straight from the legislation rather than some LA do-gooder's own interpretation.

J T

10:20 AM, 18th August 2015
About 3 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Luke P" at "17/08/2015 - 13:58":

Thanks for the advice.
I have contemplated getting the fire authority in, but now Im paranoid that they might find something even worse and the whole thing escalates even further. We are now looking at putting in an escape panel onto the landing. Its only money after all.

thanks for all the help


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