Rules and regulations - regulations you need to know about

RegulationsIt is very important to know about the various gas and electrical regulations that must be complied with when letting a residential property.

The Housing Scotland Act states that a landlord must ensure their property meets the Repairing Standard at the start of, and throughout, a tenancy.  There are also safety regulations for soft furnishings that all landlords must comply with.

If your property is to be let to three or more unrelated adults, a separate HMO licence is required as well.

To find out more about our letting services and how we could help you through the letting rules and regulations, please get in touch.

Gas regulations

Landlords Gas Safety Certificate: Under the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998, a property must be issued with a Landlords Gas Safety certificate before the property can be let. This is renewable every twelve months and should not be confused with an annual service. Unless you have instructed Rettie & Co. to arrange for the certificates to be carried out on your behalf, a copy of the certificate should be provided to our office before a tenancy commences.

Electrical regulations

Periodic Electrical Inspection (PEI):  It is a statutory requirement for rented properties that the electrical installation complies with British Standard BS7671. Our company policy is that the installation be inspected and certified every three/five years, depending on the age of the property.

Portable Appliances Test (PAT):  A Portable Appliance Test certificate covers all ‘portable items’ and the earth bonding. Our company policy is that this certificate be issued on an annual basis.

Copies of all certificates should be provided to our office before a tenancy commences, unless you have instructed Rettie & Co. to arrange for the certificates to be carried out on your behalf.

Energy Performance Certificate (EPC): any property available for let as of 4th January 2009 must provide an EPC in order to comply with European Union directives. An EPC must be completed by a Chartered Surveyor or a qualified Energy Assessor and indicates how environmentally friendly and energy efficient a property is - in much the same way as for domestic appliances. This certificate must be made available to Rettie & Co. prior to marketing, so that we can make it available to prospective tenants.

Soft furnishings

It is mandatory to ensure that all soft furnishings in a let property comply with the Furniture and Furnishings (Fire) (Safety) Regulations 1988. 

In order to satisfy these regulations, all items of soft furnishings such as mattresses, sofas, windows seats, etc., must display a compliance label. As a landlord it is your responsibility to ensure that all furniture and soft furnishings comply. Any items which do not comply should be removed from your property. 

House in multiple occupation (HMO) regulations

These apply to any property in which three or more unrelated adults share.

In this case the landlord needs to apply to the local authority for a license to let the property. Certain criteria may have to be met to comply with the regulations. Please get in touch if you require more detailed advice.

Housing (Scotland) Act 2006 – The Repairing Standard

This Act came into force on 3 September 2007 and states that a landlord must ensure their property meets the Repairing Standard at the start of, and throughout, a tenancy.   

A landlord will have to ensure that their property is “reasonably fit for human habitation” and is wind and water tight. The structure, exterior, installations, fixtures and fittings should be in reasonable repair and working order. Landlords, or their agents will be required to undertake repairs and maintenance to their property in a reasonable timescale.

One or more functioning smoke alarms should be installed in the property (normally at least one smoke alarm on each floor). If there are multiple alarms, they should be mains interlinked. Any smoke alarm installed or replaced after 3 September 2007 must be mains powered. The landlord should ensure that the smoke alarm(s) are regularly maintained in accordance with the manufacturer’s recommendations. 

At the beginning of a tenancy or earlier, the landlord is required to provide the tenant with written information on the effect of the Repairing Standard provisions in relation to the tenancy.  Rettie & Co. will issue this information to the tenant on your behalf.

To find out more about our letting services and how we could help you through the letting rules and regulations, please get in touch.

 

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