Residential Landlords’ Update

Residential landlords get some good news and bad news this month.  The good news is that the deadline for registering multi-let properties that have a common heating and cooling system with the National Measurement Office has been extended from 30 April, 2015 to a more manageable 31 December, 2015.  As discussed in eZine 25 March 2015 (More Heat Than Light) the regulations require landlords of multi-let properties to install separate meters for each occupier so that individual tenants pay for the amount of energy that they actually use, rather than a fixed share of a communal bill.

The bad news is that from 1 October 2015, the Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarm (England) Regulations come into force.  Residential landlords must install smoke alarms on each floor of a property that is used as living accommodation.  There is a slight kink in the wording of the regulations that might catch the unwary; the regulations require that the landlord

“ensure that each prescribed alarm is in proper working order on the day the tenancy begins if it is a new tenancy.”

Checking alarms a day or week before the new tenants move in would be a breach of the strict terms of the regulations, so landlords should beware of agents checking properties on their behalf in advance of a new tenancy beginning.  If the alarms are not checked on the day the tenancy begins, the landlord will be the one facing a fine of up to £5,000.

As the title of the regulations suggests, carbon monoxide alarms are also to become a must have feature in properties which have a solid fuel burning appliance.  The Aga and wood burning stove that look so attractive in the agent’s particulars now come with a requirement that the landlord fit, and check, carbon monoxide alarms in any room containing such a device.

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Roderick Campbell

Partner, Head of Commercial Property

Rod joined Hart Brown as a trainee in 1983, qualified in 1985 and became a partner in 1988. Rod has specialised in property law for...

Partner, Head of Commercial Property

Roderick Campbell

Rod joined Hart Brown as a trainee in 1983, qualified in 1985 and became a partner in 1988.

Rod has specialised in property law for over 20 years concentrating on commercial property for the last 7 years. He handles a broad range of commercial transactions for both businesses and individuals. He has developed a particular expertise in dealing with restrictive covenants, options, conditional contracts and overage.

He is a member of the Law Society Property Group, the LawNet Commercial Property Group and Mensa. In order to further enhance his knowledge and skills in 2007 Rod took on the arduous task of studying for, and passing with Distinction, an LL.M Masters Degree in Advanced Commercial Property Law through Northumbria University. He achieved the highest combined score with his first 4 assignments and was awarded top prize by Butterworths/Lexis Nexis.

In 2008 he published a book on “Methods of Securing Development Land Overage”.

Roderick’s clients regularly describe him as “very good to deal with”, “clear, direct, straightforward, efficient and effective.” Another client commented: "Roderick Campbell provided extremely helpful, insightful, and totally professional advice. He was much more useful than other solicitors involved in the transaction."

His most memorable case was an Option Agreement concerning an M25 service area which lasted for some 12 years.