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Be ready for new safety rules on March 1st, Scots landlords warned

scotland safety measures landlords

Landlords in Scotland will have to meet a raft of measures to keep their properties up to scratch when new rules come in on 1st March.

Rules around kitchens, heating systems, access, fire doors, residual current devices and fuels have all been updated under the Repairing Standard - the minimum level of repair for privately rented accommodation.

There will be a new requirement to have safely accessible food storage and preparation space as well as a fixed heating system. In tenement flats, tenants must be able to safely access and use any common parts, such as common closes, however, tenement flats won’t fail the repairing standard if work otherwise needed to comply can’t be carried out because a majority of owners have refused consent.

Working order

Common doors will need to be secure and fitted with satisfactory locks that allow users to open them from the inside without a key and don’t block the exit in the event of a fire. Another amendment is for installations of any type of fuel to be in a reasonable state of repair and in proper working order.

A residual current device (a device to reduce the risk of electrocution and fire by breaking the circuit in the event of a fault) will also have to be fitted. Landlords should advise tenants to check that the RCD works by pressing the integral test button at specified times.

Bob Cairney (pictured), director of technical services at trade body Select, says: “Landlords may now need to take some action where a situation is identified in an Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR) and the electrical contractor responsible for the periodic inspection and testing should be able to provide appropriate advice on how best to comply.”

Read the new rules in full.
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