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Tenants: know your rights to gas appliance safety

Your landlord’s responsibilities

When you rent a property there are regulations in place that are designed to keep you safe. Gas appliances carry the risk of carbon monoxide leaks if they’re not working properly so your landlord has an obligation to make sure they’re safe and has to provide evidence that they are in the form of a Landlords’ Gas Safety Certificate, also known as a CP12.

It’s a legal requirement for landlords to have all gas appliances, pipework, chimneys and flues checked annually to make sure the property they’re renting out is safe for you to live in. This will include boilers, gas fires and gas cookers. A copy of this certificate should be provided to you every year when the checks take place (your landlord should provide this within 28 days of a service being carried out) and you should get a current certificate when you move in (if the checks were carried out within the last 12 months they won’t need to be checked again). Only Gas Safe registered heating engineers are able to provide the Landlords’ Gas Safety Certificate.

How you can help your landlord keep you safe

The condition of the gas appliances in any property you rent is the responsibility of your landlord however you can help them to help you:

  • Be available to allow engineers in to the property to service the boiler and any other gas appliances. Your landlord is obliged to give you reasonable notice of this and you should always check the ID of anyone who comes to your property. It is worth noting that your landlord cannot enter the property without your consent but it’s obviously in your interest to have servicing and repairs carried out
  • Use appliances according to manufacturers’ instructions and report any issues such as fault codes or appliance not working properly (eg no hot water or cooker failing to heat) to your landlord
  • If you smell gas, inform your landlord but also call the National Gas Emergencies number (0800 111 999) immediately
  • Don’t ever try and repair or make adjustments to a gas appliance yourself, even if you think you know what you’re doing
  • Make sure you have a current copy of your Landlords’ Gas Safety Certificate and keep it safe along with your other tenancy documents
  • Don’t be tempted get your own heating engineer in to do the checks and expect your landlord to pay for it. It is up to them to organise this directly with their own appointed Gas Safe Engineer so they would be under no obligation to reimburse you. However, it is a criminal offence not to have a valid CP12 so if your landlord does not appear to be meeting their obligations you have a right to ask them to do so and even report them to the Health & Safety Executive (HSE) who has the authority to impose a fine of up to £6000 and even a 6 month custodial sentence. It’s useful to keep a note of when your certificate expires so you know when a new one is due – there is no ‘grace period’, it has to be renewed by the expiry date.

If you have any concerns about your gas appliances then take this up with your landlord or letting agent. You can find out about all the rights you have as a tenant on the government website.

Landlords, if you are unsure about your obligations or require a Gas Safe Engineer to carry out services and supply Gas Safety Certificates see our information for landlords or give us a call on 0800 032 6478.

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