10:00 AM, 7th December 2021, About A year ago
The UK Association of Letting Agents (UKALA) has applauded the announcement by Housing Minister Eddie Hughes MP that people living in social housing will be safer in their homes under new rules that will mean smoke alarms must be fitted in all rented accommodation.
The announcement means that all housing providers are required by law to install smoke alarms in all social housing. Additionally, carbon monoxide alarms must be fitted in social and private rented properties with fixed appliances, such as gas boilers or fires.
The proposed regulation changes will also require carbon monoxide alarms to be fitted when new appliances such as gas boilers or fires are installed in any home. Additionally, all landlords in social and private rented sectors will be required to repair or replace smoke and carbon monoxide alarms once reported as faulty.
All costs of the new requirements to install and maintain alarms will have to be met by property owners.
These reforms follow a proposal in last year’s Social Housing White Paper detailing reforms in the social housing sector to increase standards, including giving tenants an easier way to raise concerns. It also provides the regulator with stronger powers to take enforcement action.
Tim Clark, chairman of UKALA stated: “It has been an unacceptable double standard until now, but people living in social housing will now be safer at home under these new rules that require smoke alarms to be fitted in all rented accommodation. UKALA has been involved in these consultations throughout the process and we applaud the parity that has come out of it. The new regulations will help to bring down fire and carbon monoxide casualties and fatalities. It will also give increased protection to tenants of both private and social rented homes in England”.
Around 20 people are killed each year in accidental carbon monoxide poisoning, and many more through house fires.
The proposed reforms follow a two-month consultation on amending the Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarm (England) Regulations 2015 and the statutory guidance (Approved Document J) supporting Part J of the Building Regulations. UKALA has been involved in these consultations throughout the process and applauds the parity that has come out of it.
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