If you’re a responsible landlord in London, or anywhere in the UK, you’ll already be more than aware of the importance of carrying out Fire Risk Assessments to minimize the risk of a fire breaking out in the property and causing damage to the building, its contents or any of the tenants.
Housefires are no joke, and while some accidents may occur that couldn’t possibly have been predicted or even prevented, there are a number of steps you can take as a landlord to ensure that fire never poses a threat in your rental property.
What is a fire risk assessment?
Crucial tools for helping to determine what action should be taken to keep a building and its contents (both human and inanimate) safe from the risk of fire, fire risk assessments involve a detailed examination of a property being used for rental purposes, designed to highlight and evaluate potential hazards from fire. They also set out any actions necessary to reduce the fire risk and to evacuate tenants safely from the building in the event of a fire.
What is reviewed in a fire risk assessment?
A number of different factors, from smoke detectors and fire blankets to potential fire hazards and escape routes are systematically reviewed during a fire risk assessment, and if a rental property has a communal area (or more than one), such an assessment must be carried out by a certified professional as a requirement of the law.
Additionally, if the property is inhabited by five or more tenants, the fire risk assessment has to be documented fully in writing.
How often must they be carried out?
For all landlords owning HMOs and who are concerned about London fire safety in their properties, it’s worth reviewing and updating your fire risk assessment annually as a minimum, and every time a change is made either to the property itself, or to the tenants residing there.
But for more detailed guidance about assessments, their frequency and whether they’re a requirement of the law for you as a landlord, you can get in touch with your local council, housing authority or the Fire Brigade.
What types of rental properties are subject to fire risk assessments?
HMOs, or houses of multiple occupancy must have them, and this is mainly due to the fact that such properties are at a higher risk of fire and with the occupants unlikely to know each other well (if at all), they may not be able to escape the building unharmed. Other fire safety steps may also need to be taken, such as installing fire extinguishers in common areas on every floor, and emergency lighting for bigger buildings with more than two floors.
Those properties rented by families or groups of friends and which aren’t classed as ‘single private dwellings’, and which have living spaces that are communal, must also have a fire risk assessment carried out. Read more “add your site” “list your business in the” “free and paid submission to the” statistics
What about for flats?
All apartment blocks must have a fire risk assessment, and should a flat be occupied by more than 4 tenants at any given time, the assessment must be documented in writing.
One person must be designated as the ‘responsible person’ in the event of a fire, and they must make sure that fire risk assessments are carried out as and when required.
Fires are indiscriminate and when they do occur, they can have potentially deadly consequences. To keep your rental property and everything inside it safe, take steps today to ensure that your fire risk assessment is up-to-date, and that the building is as protected from the threat of fire, as it can possibly be. You can know about remember guy nguyen si kha • bells of gal • 2022.