Last week was gas safety week.
Having a gas safety check done by a registered Gas Safe engineer is an annual requirement of every landlord. The engineer must test all gas appliances in a property every year, and it’s a good idea to include the checking of carbon monoxide alarms while they are at it.
What worries me is the number of times a gas safety check is not kept up to date. This is a vital part of a landlords responsibility and the risks if it gets forgotten are not worth thinking about!
For our managed properties we have robust systems in the office to ensure that we can request the checks to be carried out during the month before the due date. We are also audited annually and part of this includes ensuring all our managed properties have a valid gas safety check. This is a simple thing to ensure if it is part of your routine when managing 300+ properties.
If you are a landlord that self manages their property then you must not under estimate the importance of this check. Everyone is aware of the health and safety aspect of maintaining a boiler or gas appliance but there can be other implications to not having a Gas safety certificate. But you need to consider the implications if a tenancy starts to go wrong.
Should a landlord need to gain possession a property a landlord will generally rely on a section 21 notice. If they need to gain possession through the courts they will require a landlord to supply not only the Tenancy Deposit Registration Certificate but also a copy of the EPC for the property and an up to date Landlords Gas Safety Certificate.
If a tenant will not allow access for the check to be carried out it can be a sign of problems at the property. My advice to any landlord if self managing is to set up a reminder the month before it is due and to keep records of when the engineer was instructed or appointments with the tenants made.
If you find yourself in a situation where the tenant has stopped paying rent or you are worried about being able to get the gas safety check completed please give me a call. I am happy to discuss, in confidence, any circumstances giving landlords cause for concern.