New Regulations to come into place governing smoke and carbon monoxide alarms

Draft regulations, known as the Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarm (Amendment) Regulations 2022 have been published and are expected to come into force on 1st October 2022.  The new regulations will amend the Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarm (England) Regulations 2015 which came into effect on 1st October 2015 and therefore will impact on landlords and tenants alike.

The key changes identified in the regulations are as follows: –

  • Previously, it was the responsibility of the landlord to ensure that the smoke alarm and carbon monoxide (CO2) alarm is working prior to the new tenancy, with the tenant responsible for maintaining the alarms, however, the new regulations provide that Landlords will be under a duty to repair or replace the alarms as soon as possible, if they are informed, they are faulty. Testing the alarms and reporting any defects will however remain the responsibility of the tenant. Landlords will also need to be able to demonstrate that the alarms were tested on the first day of a new tenancy.
  • Social landlords will no longer be exempt from complying with the regulations and therefore, all landlords will be under an obligation to ensure that at least one smoke alarm is installed on each story of the premises, where there is a room used wholly or partly as living accommodation.
  • All rental properties in England must ensure that a CO2 alarm is installed in any room used as living accommodation with a fixed combustion appliance, such as gas boilers. However, gas cookers are expressly excluded. This widens the requirement, which at present only applies where there is a solid fuel burning combustion appliance, such as a wood burner. The mandatory licence conditions for houses in multiple occupations in England will also be amended in line with this change.
  • The process for serving remedial notices will also be amended and will require the local housing authority to consider written representations made by the landlord. The remedial notice will be suspended whilst the representations are considered.

We would recommend landlords ensure their appliances are serviced annually and alarms are tested regularly and before, a new tenancy begins. Landlords should be alert to the new regulations due to come into force and begin installing or repairing alarms to prevent being in breach of the regulations.

Should you have any queries concerning residential lettings please contact Natasha Kelt [email protected], Jennifer Whitwam [email protected], or Juwayriyah Badrudin [email protected], who will be able to assist.

01702 662963 (Essex)  020 35537115 (London)

Author: Courtney Parry-Lansdowne