Understanding Landlord Fire Safety Regulations
Landlords are under a legal obligation to ensure that they provide their tenants with a safe living space in a number of key ways. This includes a number of regulations defining a landlord’s fire safety responsibilities, and it is important to be aware of these before letting out a property.
If you are letting a furnished property, it is important to make sure that all furniture holds an acceptable fire safety certification. This should usually be clearly marked on the label, both in words and with a graphic symbol. This certifies that the item has passed a test and has displayed a suitable level of resistance to fire.
You should make sure the label is not removed from the item of furniture. This means it can easily and simply be checked at any time that the item is indeed fire-safe.
You must ensure that any property you let out will provide a suitable escape route in the event of a fire. This can, however, be quite difficult in properties that have only a single entrance and exit or where the layout means that any escape route will require travel through a certain area. If there is a blaze at a bottleneck point preventing people from passing, this can effectively trap people inside the building. Most commonly, this problem affects flats which have only one door. This means that tenants have to move through a communal area, hall or staircase in order to escape.
To bypass this problem, landlords should seriously consider what steps they can take to prevent fire from blocking up such choke points and ensure that tenants will have a safe route of escape. You may very well want to consider installing a sprinkler or misting system, such as those provided by Cheltenham Automist supplier http://www.mainpoint.co.uk/, in these areas. If a fire is detected, these will automatically dispense water to help prevent people being trapped inside.
You are required to provide fire alarms for any property you make available for rent. This must include at least one fire alarm on each floor of the property. Depending on size and layout, more may be necessary.
Larger Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMOs) may also require fire extinguishers. Any room that contains a usable fireplace, including those with wood-burners, must also have a carbon monoxide alarm.