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Advice for Landlords

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Private landlords face major new law change

Private landlords will have to fit working smoke and carbon monoxide alarms in their properties following a change in the law due to be introduced in October 2015. The new regulations will require landlords to install smoke alarms on every floor of their property and test them at the start of every tenancy. They will also need to install carbon monoxide alarms in any habitable rooms where a solid fuel heating system is installed.

Landlords who fail to install the alarms could face a penalty of up to £5,000. Hereford & Worcester Fire and Rescue Service have received a limited stock of alarms from government to help private landlords comply with the new regulations.

The landlord, managing agent or other representative must also check that alarms work at the start of each tenancy and replace any that do not. Tenants should be encouraged to regularly test the alarms.

Community Risk Group Commander Adrian Elliott said, "this is a very important planned change in the law and it's vital that private landlords understand exactly what it means to them." The latest figures show that people are at least four times more likely to die in a fire in the home if there's no working smoke alarm. The new regulations are expected to prevent up to 36 deaths and 1,375 injuries a year.

Although the fire service is leading on the distribution of smoke alarms, enforcement will be the responsibility of local housing authorities.

Landlords wishing to apply for alarms should complete the Landlord's Property Details form. Should you have any queries please call 0800 032 1155.

Additional information is available at www.alarms4life.com