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

Roderick has specialised in property law for 30 years. He trained with Hart Brown, qualifying in 1985 and became a Partner in 1990. He specialises...

Partner, Head of Commercial Property

Roderick Campbell

Roderick has specialised in property law for 30 years. He trained with Hart Brown, qualifying in 1985 and became a Partner in 1990.

He specialises in all aspects of non-contentious commercial property work including freehold and leasehold acquisitions and disposals; residential development work; options; conditional contracts, development agreements and land promotion agreements. He acts for a broad range of clients including property companies, developers, owner/occupiers and SMEs.

Hart Brown is recognised in the Legal 500 for real estate work in the South East and the entry states “Roderick Campbell provides “practical and pragmatic advice” and is a “first class” communicator.”

In 2008 he published a book on “Methods of Securing Development Land Overage”. He also holds an LLM Masters Degree in Advanced Commercial Property Law with distinction.

He is a member of the Law Society Property Group and LawNet Commercial Property Group.

His most memorable case was acting for a landowner on the grant of an Option Agreement concerning an M25 service area which lasted for some 12 years between exchange and completion!

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