Is Tenant Safety Being Ignored By Landlords?

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Is Tenant Safety Being Ignored By Landlords?

Is Tenant Safety Being Ignored By Landlords?

Is Your Rental Property Safe For Tenants To Live In?

Rental properties can be hazardous to tenant’s health if they are not properly repaired and maintained with the Association of Independent Inventory Clerks (AIIC) reporting an increase in the number of dangerous rental properties being offered to let by a minority of unscrupulous landlords.

The problem of rogue and accidental landlords cutting corners in an attempt to maximise profits, allowing dangerous properties to be rented out to unsuspecting tenants is growing, as there are plenty of properties being offered for rent that would be considered by many to be cramped with poor ventilation and questionable fire escape routes, that can be found on popular property websites.

There are a number of Government and Local Authority regulations governing rental properties in the UK’s private rented sector (PRS) that are intended to protect a tenants’ safety, but rather than abiding by the law some rogue operators are attempting to take advantage of the continued strong demand for rental property and rather than using specialist products and services to ensure continuous rental income, such as rent protection insurance, but instead some landlords are mistakenly cutting corners in an attempt to cash in.According to Pat Barber, Chair of the AIIC , small and cramped accommodation is just the thin edge of the wedge: “It is an unfortunate truth in the UK, many disadvantaged tenants are put in danger by unscrupulous landlords who exploit their vulnerability. Some of these tenants have to live in rented properties, full of dangerous hazards which put their safety at risk. The AIIC have come across many dangerous rental properties including; rooms built into lofts with only flimsy wooden ladders for access, (illegal, but quite common). Rental properties with loose stair carpets or dangerous bannister rails at the top of stairs; blocked or covered extractors; loose curtain poles; faulty gas boilers and fires; excessive mould throughout the property; exposed electric wiring; damaged and leaning brick walls; no keys for window locks and faulty fire alarms”.

Raising the standards of rental properties in the UK’s private rental sector is a big challenge for all concerned, with many Local Authorities wanting landlords to be mandatorily licensed in selected areas and new legislation being periodically introduced.

UK PRS landlords have a duty of care to ensure tenant safety in their rental properties and should not try to cut corners in a mistaken attempt to save financial expenditure. There are a wide range of products and services available to landlords and letting agents that are designed to protect rental income and look after tenants, including rent protection insurance, tenant liability insurance and tenant contents insurance.

Rental properties should be periodically inspected and regularly maintained by landlords in order to comply with regulations and the terms and conditions of landlord’s buildings insurance policies and any issue that could be a potential threat to tenant safety should be rectified immediately.

This was written by Mike Clarke. Posted on at 11:30 am. Filed under Insurance. Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Follow comments here with the RSS feed. Both comments and trackbacks are currently closed.