Is a log fire in a BTL madness??!

Is a log fire in a BTL madness??!

14:04 PM, 6th January 2015, About 7 years ago 15

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I have just bought a nice little Victorian terraced house in a good area, to let out. It has been owner occupied until now, and it has a solid fuel stove installed in the living room fire place.

What do people think … is it madness to leave this there, should I pay to have it removed? I am not sure also how this would affect insurance, and whether I should insert a special clause into the contract….?

Any thoughts?



by Colin Dartnell

9:28 AM, 10th January 2015, About 7 years ago

I can't see what the problem is, I have a log stove (and full central heating) in a cottage I let and it is a positive attraction. Just check it was installed properly and there is a stainless steel flue running all the way from the boiler to the chimney pot.

Be in control of the sweeping rather than leaving it to the tenants who may forget to have it done.

Add a clause to the AST that if they make burn holes in the carpets they have to cover the cost.

As far as damp logs go give them a supply of zip soot reducers to burn each week, it works a treat reducing creosote build up which is what causes the chimney to burn. Slow smouldering fires are the worst for soot build up as there is not enough heat to get the smoke all the way up the chimney so it settles on the sides.


10:44 AM, 11th January 2015, About 7 years ago

You should have received a certificate when you purchased the property - it's a bit like a GSC - but not renewable each year. This confirms that the fire was installed by a registered competent person. The local council may do a random check on your fire and particularly if you are considering HB tenants. Without said certificate you are in serious trouble.Unless it has been in for some time it should have had a carbon monoxide detector provided. Can you produce the certificate to your insurance company? It will not be expensive to remove and provided the flu was lined it can be blanked off but again - use a certified fitter to carry out the work. I have a log burner and have had years of experience of them and the short answer to your query is - REMOVE IT. They are extremely dirty and need a suitable vac. to clean the stove out and if the fire is not refuelled correctly you will have to decorate more frequently than you would with gas or electric.

by Roger Stott

21:13 PM, 11th January 2015, About 7 years ago

Don't do it. If it was your home it would be perfectly fine. It is not your home. You are aiming to maximise income and reduce expenditure. Adding the risk of the tenant burning your house down while you are off your head on rum punch in the Caribbean is not the way forward.
I have a similar problem with an apartment that I am renovating on Anglesey. What will become the dining room has a small fireplace. The previous tenant asked permission to fit new carpets. I agreed. Now that the tenants have moved out and I have moved in with the team I find that the carpet was cut and laid UNDERNEATH the fireplace! Any attempt to light that fire would have resulted in the destruction of my property. Not to mention that the room was a kiddie's bedroom at the time. Keep it simple. Be aware of Murphy's law and act accordingly. If you have central heating they don't need a log burner.

by Neil Woodhead

9:34 AM, 12th January 2015, About 7 years ago

Rodger It depends on the quality of property and tenant....a feature can enhance a property and make it a "home" which can generate higher rents and longer lets........if the fire was such a risk Insurers' would exclude them from their policies.

If you are allowing tenants to change their carpets and not noticing until they move out if fitted incorrectly...I would recommend looking at these issues during one of your regular inspections.

by Roger Stott

13:38 PM, 12th January 2015, About 7 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Neil Woodhead" at "12/01/2015 - 09:34":

Hello Neil, thanks for your reply. Firstly there is no "D" in Roger. Moving on, I was a little lapse in the inspection department regarding the previous tenant so I take your comment on board and fully agree. However. They had been there for many years and I trusted the gentleman who was the first signature on the agreement. Following an acrimonious split with his partner he moved out and the lady in question then became my tenant and brought in another boyfriend who fitted the carpets. Without casting judgement........OK, I am casting judgement, this lady was of the type that would wander round to Tesco at half one in the afternoon dressed in jimmy bottoms, carpet slippers and a hoodie top. Would you want them lighting a fire in your investment property? I think not.

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