The Scottish government has published the rules that landlords will have to follow from Monday onwards when the nation’s housing market re-opens.
As well as the now familiar call to wear masks, wash hands with soap and socially distance, the guidelines also make clear that maintenance and testing of gas and safety equipment can be relaxed until later this summer.
For example, landlords must only ‘make every effort’ to abide by gas safety rules.
And Scotland’s authorities will also take a more relaxed attitude to electrical safety maintenance and testing which, unless there is an ongoing problem at a property, won’t have to be completed until later on this summer when Phase 3 of the Covid route map is completed.
Other measures include not enabling house moves where any of the tenants are shielding or self-isolating, and that physical viewings of properties should only take place if virtual viewings are not possible.
Landlords should also only undertake repairs and maintenance including gas and electrical safety checks between tenancies when the property is vacant.
If this is not possible, then visits by contractors or the landlord should only be by appointment and ideally when the tenants are not in the property.
“Landlords and agents must give tenants appropriate notice before visiting the property and should not enter the property without the tenant’s consent, except in an emergency,” the guidance says.
And the new guidelines ask that landlords deep clean properties in between tenancies to help prevent the spread of the virus.