What Are My Legal Responsibilities as a Landlord?
A landlord has a variety of legal responsibilities, and it’s important that both landlord and tenant are aware of these obligations to avoid any misunderstandings or problems during a tenancy.
In this article, H2 Property Services will look at the legal responsibilities of a landlord and make it clear what is expected of someone in that position.
- Are you a Landlord? Do you need our local plumbers, electricians, gas or heating engineers? Give our team a call today on 020 7751 3344.
What are the Legal Responsibilities and Obligations for Landlords?
There are many legal obligations that landlords must follow in the UK. From how the deposit is saved, to gas and electrical safety. See more details below.
Deposits, for the most part, are crucial to a tenancy; without one, tenants are by and large not allowed to rent a property. Every landlord has a right to charge a deposit, but they are also obliged to follow relevant laws regarding them.
There’s a maximum amount that can be charged for a deposit, for example, and there’s also an obligation to protect your tenants’ deposit(s) under one of three government-approved deposit protection schemes.
Landlords are legally required to have a yearly gas check on their property. This check will result in a Gas Safety Certificate being issued, and any issues that are found will be rectified. The check must be carried out by a Gas Safe registered engineer, and a copy of the gas safety check must be provided to the tenant before moving in, or within 28 days of the check taking place.
We have written in depth about Gas Safety Certificates in this post.
The safety of your property is paramount, and as such there are electrical safety obligations that landlords must fulfill. For HMOs (houses in multiple occupancy), an electrical safety test must be carried out on the property every five years, all electrical fittings and appliances must be safe, and all fittings are required to have a CE mark – this certifies that the product complies with European safety laws.
Landlords must ensure that:
- Their property has access to escape routes at all times
- Furniture provided is fire safe
- Fire alarms and carbon monoxide detectors are fitted in the property
- Smoke alarms are present on every floor
- Carbon monoxide detectors are fitted in any room with fuel burning devices
Regarding the smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors, it’s crucial that they are tested to ensure they are in safe working order.
Energy performance certificate
Landlords must provide their tenants with a valid energy performance certificate (EPC) – failure to do so means a landlord is not legally able to rent out their property and may be fined £200.
Right to rent
Landlords are required to confirm that a prospective tenant has a ‘right to rent’ before entering into a tenancy agreement with them. Renting to someone who does not have the right to rent can result in a fine for the landlord of up to £3,000 per tenant or even a prison sentence.
How to rent
Landlords must give your tenant a copy of the ‘how to rent’ checklist when they begin their tenancy.
LANDLORD SERVICES LONDON
H2 Property Services are proud local tradesmen and women in plumbing, electrical, heating and gas work for properties anywhere in London. If you need a gas safety certificate, or an electrical safety certificate for your property, contact our team today.
For more information about how we can help Landlords and provide property management services, please get in touch with us today and we’ll be happy to help.
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