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Landlord essentials: gas safety certificates

Tuesday 07 April 2015

Landlords are required by law to have their rental properties checked by a Gas Safe-registered engineer at least once a year and the consequences for those who do not can be serious.

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In September 2014 Accrington landlord Tariq Ali was ordered to pay nearly £60,000 in fines and costs after he ignored repeated warnings about arranging an annual gas safety check at a house in the town.

Trafford Magistrates’ Court was told how Mr Ali, of Accrington, was given numerous opportunities by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) to arrange an inspection for a property in the town after the previous gas safety record expired in October 2012.

Mr Ali came to the attention of the Gas Safe Register – the official body for gas engineers – after gas appliances at several of his properties were classified as being at risk or immediately dangerous.

He pleaded guilty to single breaches of the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998 and the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974.

Russell Kramer, Chief Executive of Gas Safe Register, said in a statement released by the Health and Safety Executive: “When it comes to rented property, it is important that landlords know their duties and tenants know their rights. A landlord must be able to provide a gas safety record for the property, showing that the gas appliances have been safety checked by a Gas Safe-registered engineer in the last 12 months.”

Landlords who neglect their duties with regard to gas appliance safety checks and maintenance risk criminal prosecution which could result in imprisonment or a fine of up to £20,000. Where cases are referred to Crown Court the maximum penalty may be imprisonment, an unlimited fine, or both.

Under the rules set out by the Gas Safety Regulations landlords must:

  • Repair and maintain gas pipework, flues and appliances, keeping them safe
  • Ensure annual gas safety checks are carried out on each appliance and flue
  • Keep records of every safety check that is performed
  • Keep tenants informed about their safety responsibilities while living in a property

While Mr Ali’s case was an extreme one and it should be noted that most landlords do their best to comply with the rules set out above, one way to be sure of this is to have a gas safety survey or CP12 completed.

What is a CP12 survey?

CP12 surveys are designed to ensure the following is checked:

  • The location and condition of each appliance and flue
  • Flues or chimneys to ensure that any fumes are being safely funnelled outside
  • The adequate supply of fresh air so gas burns properly
  • That gas is burning properly in each appliance and each has been safely installed. The engineer is not checking the appliance itself or its functionality but randomly checks one burner, for example to ensure gas is burning properly
  • That all safety devices are working properly, and any malfunctioning appliances are shut off

If an installation is passed engineers will provide a Gas Safety Certificate and a report which includes an indicative costing for any recommended remedial work.

Qualified and accredited surveyors and engineers Property Assure provide annual Gas Safe checks with CP12 certificates and boiler servicing with peace of mind knowing that work is completed by Gas Safe-approved engineers who will log the date for next year's checks then send you a reminder.

The firm promises straightforward, honest advice provided by independent and impartial qualified and accredited experts.

For more information please phone 0844 257 9667.

If you found this guide useful then please visit the Simple Landlords Insurance News section for more helpful tips and advice.

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