Why London Landlords Need to Check They Have Gas Safety Certificates
When you rent out a property, it’s important to stay on the right side of the law and keep your tenants safe. Out of all your legal obligations, perhaps one of the most important is getting a landlord gas certificate, which shows that the gas fittings in your rental property are safe to use. If not properly maintained, gas can be extremely dangerous, so it’s easy to see why these regular checks are so important.
Which landlords need these certificates?
Any landlord renting out a property with gas appliances needs to provide a gas safety certificate for their tenants. This might be because you have gas central heating, a fireplace, or anything else that uses gas. These certificates need to be issued for:
* Private rentals – houses, flats etc.
* Houses of multiple occupation
* B&B accommodation
* Housing association and homes let through a council
* Holiday homes
What checks are carried out?
Gas safety checks are thorough, with each appliance and flue checked annually to ensure they’re well-maintained and safe to use. When you get a gas safety certificate, there will be a long checklist of everything that needs to be examined, from the pipework to chimneys, ensuring that everything has been covered.
When does this need to be carried out?
By law, within 28 days of a tenant moving in, you should provide them with a gas safety check. Most landlords offer 12-month contracts, so a gas safety check could be carried out when the property is vacant between tenants. If you have a short-term rental, such as a holiday flat or Airbnb, then you should keep a copy of the certificate somewhere in the property. You should ensure that these checks are carried out annually and keep a copy of the certificate for two years.
What happens if I don’t get a certificate?
Without a gas safety certificate, tenants have no indication that their home is safe to live in, which can ruin your business relationship. At worst, a faulty appliance can lead to an injury or even death. Around 30 deaths a year are due to gas or carbon monoxide poisoning, so it’s a very real danger. That’s why it’s so important for the work to be carried out with those with gas safety cards and plenty of experience. Penalties for non-compliance of gas safety regulations are up to £6,000 for each offence, or six months in jail. If a tenant dies while staying in your property due to negligence, then there’s even the possibility of being prosecuted for manslaughter, which can lead to a long sentence. In addition to this, if you haven’t followed regulations, your insurance can be invalid which can leave you thousands of pounds out of pocket.
Renting a London property out and need a gas safety certificate? Call West London Gas today on 020 8434 3644 and we will book a convenient time to carry out a thorough inspection.