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Housing Health and Safety Rating System Regulations Under Review

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Health and safety is the most critical issue for most landlords and tenants. There may be some letting professionals who are more focused on making money, and these are the ones who inevitably get the media headlines. However, most people involved with the sector want to ensure that homes are in excellent condition and that people are safe.

Therefore, the fact that the Housing Minister, Heather Wheeler, has stated new plans to update health and safety standards for rental accommodation is welcomed by many. It is believed that these plans will improve the standard of living for many people across the country. It is not out of the question to state many people are living in unsatisfactory conditions now and it is these people who will reap the benefits of these changes.

Many landlords will not be affected by any new measures

These changes will not affect the landlords who take considerable pride in the homes they lease. In fact, there will be many landlords who welcome these measures. It is the unreasonable or substandard landlords who have concerns to deal with.  There are many tenants living in inadequate quality homes across the country with a sub-standard level of heating for their home while enduring issues like dampness.

Tackling these problems has often been left to local councils. There is the power for these councils to force negligent or low-quality landlords to make upgrades relating to the Housing and Safety Rating system. However, this system hasn’t been improved in over a decade, which is why the Housing Minister is leading the way for proposed changes with the system.

Changes may be made to the way landlords operate

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The review will examine whether the existing system is fit for purpose or whether changes must be made. It is also expected that the review will consider introducing minimum standards for common health and safety matters. There are some matters that crop up often when it comes to rental accommodation and if these can be addressed, many people will be happier and safer.

Heather Wheeler, the Housing Minister, stated; “Everyone has a right to feel safe and secure in their own home. These reviews will allow us to revisit the current systems for health and safety ratings and carbon monoxide alarms to ensure that both are fit for purpose and meeting the needs of tenants. By looking again at these rules, we can make sure that they are working as they should to keep people safe and give them peace of mind in their homes.”

One issue that is being debated by ministers is the current standards and expectations for carbon monoxide alarms. It is believed there is close to 8 million carbon monoxide alarms in English homes alone. There are regulations regarding these alarms, stating that they must be present in private rental accommodation which have solid fuel appliances or where there are solid fuel stoves and boilers in place.

There are expectations that the review will question whether enough is being done to keep safe from the risks of carbon monoxide. There has been a greater focus on safety in rental accommodation and while landlords may have new costs to deal with, most people would accept that safety is paramount.

If you are looking for guidance or advice on how to deal with this matter or any rental issue in London, please get in touch. I am proud to say I have helped many people care for their home in an effective manner, and if you need assistance, contact me.

Matylda Nowak

CEO, Kings Accommodation