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hankdd

Fire Safety

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Can anyone give clear guidance on a landlords legal requirments around fire safety.

My sister has rented a 1st floor flat with 70's windows, ie small top opening.

I work in mental health rehousing people in Housing Association and council flats, we have to have a protected means of escape ie emegency lighting and 30 minute fire doors as well as a means of egress from every sleeping room, this does not seem to apply to Private landlords in non HMO's.

A lot of legislation seems to be about new builds or redevelopments not exsisting sites

I have phoned the Fire Brigade, HSE, they only deal with gas, Shelter, Local Authority I can not get a clear answer on what defines safe escape.

The bastards don't even have to fit smoke detectors. Help please

Edited by hankdd

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Can anyone give clear guidance on a landlords legal requirments around fire safety.

My sister has rented a 1st floor flat with 70's windows, ie small top opening.

I work in mental health rehousing people in Housing Association and council flats, we have to have a protected means of escape ie emegency lighting and 30 minute fire doors as well as a means of egress from every sleeping room, this does not seem to apply to Private landlords in non HMO's.

A lot of legislation seems to be about new builds or redevelopments not exsisting sites

I have phoned the Fire Brigade, HSE, they only deal with gas, Shelter, Local Authority I can not get a clear answer on what defines safe escape.

The bastards don't even have to fit smoke detectors. Help please

If it's not an HMO, AFAIK it's largely a case of "buyer beware". The local council may be able to intervene, but it would be on the HHSR situation (whic applies to ALL housing - at least in principle- including owner-occupied.

I only have a limited amount of sympathy - your sister could see what the windows were like - it's not like a faulty boiler which might cause carbon monoxide poisoning about which she would know nothing!

Is it an HMO?

check with

http://www.direct.gov.uk/en/HomeAndCommunity/Privaterenting/Repairsandstandards/DG_189201

and the pdf linked in.

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If it's not an HMO, AFAIK it's largely a case of "buyer beware". The local council may be able to intervene, but it would be on the HHSR situation (whic applies to ALL housing - at least in principle- including owner-occupied.

I only have a limited amount of sympathy - your sister could see what the windows were like - it's not like a faulty boiler which might cause carbon monoxide poisoning about which she would know nothing!

Is it an HMO?

check with

http://www.direct.gov.uk/en/HomeAndCommunity/Privaterenting/Repairsandstandards/DG_189201

and the pdf linked in.

Thanks for the pissy "limited sympathy". Caveat emptor indeed but informed choice comes into such decisions.

It was me who pointed out how dangerous the lack of egress might be after she had rented, I do not live locally.

It should not be buyer beware, it should be totally illegal to let housing that does not meet the highest standards required for new builds and social housing.

I am not saying smackheads should live in deathtraps but why can hardworking people not enjoy the same protection?

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The local fire service will fit an alarm free of charge. Existing buildings have to meet minimum requirements so do not get uptight. The means of escape will meet current legislation on fire resistance. The size of the windows are not relevant. Your sister will be fine . Trust me. Have a chat with your local FB and they will reassure you on the concerns you have raised on this thread.

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It should not be buyer beware, it should be totally illegal to let housing that does not meet the highest standards required for new builds and social housing.

Just how much of a Nanny State do you want? The UK has a LOT of historic housing, some dating back to the 1600s, which fail things like steepness of staircases, doors opening within the proscribed distance of tops of stairs, ceiling heights, proportion of opening window size to room size, small rooms......

Are only owner occupiers to be allowed to live in Character properties while tenants must live in nasty homogenised new-builds? To say nothing of the effect on housing supply to the rental market.

The reason that there are special rules for HMOs is that they tend to house the most vulnerable members of society. People living in non-HMOs are presumed to have the same degree of common sense as owner-occupiers, or at the very least be able to take advice / do their own research. "Things to look at for when thinking about renting a flat" is not exactly a difficult research project - Shelter, Local Authority, or any University Accommodation Office website have reams of good advice.

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The local fire service will fit an alarm free of charge. Existing buildings have to meet minimum requirements so do not get uptight. The means of escape will meet current legislation on fire resistance. The size of the windows are not relevant. Your sister will be fine . Trust me. Have a chat with your local FB and they will reassure you on the concerns you have raised on this thread.

Well, upstairs windows in HMOs are supposed to open sufficiently to admit a standard sized fireman, but that's the key point. The idea is that the fireman can get in, not that the occupant can jump out. I have a vague idea that a lot of fire deaths and injuries are due to people jumping out of upstairs windows...

Also, firemen do have handy hatchets for breaking windows if necessary.

Edited by cartimandua51

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The local fire service will fit an alarm free of charge. Existing buildings have to meet minimum requirements so do not get uptight. The means of escape will meet current legislation on fire resistance. The size of the windows are not relevant. Your sister will be fine . Trust me. Have a chat with your local FB and they will reassure you on the concerns you have raised on this thread.

Cheers daft boy but the building did not meet current standards.

The main means of egress is next to a kitchen, with no fire door, no emergency lights and no thumb lock on the main door also the gas and electricity fuse board is at the bottom of the stairs. The fire brigade said it is not a "secure exit"

The LL has agreed to fit a new window, the old unit had also failed, and change the mortice and fit a light.

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Just how much of a Nanny State do you want? The UK has a LOT of historic housing, some dating back to the 1600s, which fail things like steepness of staircases, doors opening within the proscribed distance of tops of stairs, ceiling heights, proportion of opening window size to room size, small rooms......

Are only owner occupiers to be allowed to live in Character properties while tenants must live in nasty homogenised new-builds? To say nothing of the effect on housing supply to the rental market.

The reason that there are special rules for HMOs is that they tend to house the most vulnerable members of society. People living in non-HMOs are presumed to have the same degree of common sense as owner-occupiers, or at the very least be able to take advice / do their own research. "Things to look at for when thinking about renting a flat" is not exactly a difficult research project - Shelter, Local Authority, or any University Accommodation Office website have reams of good advice.

With respect I do not want a "nanny state", I just want land lords to meet regulations so people dont die in survivable scenarios.

I see your point about informed choice but it does sound a little snobby, like arguing Food Hygiene is fine for the Burger King classes but let the elite eat Steak Tartare and room temp brie, balls to ther Nanny State! I love Steak Tartare but it has be prepared with great care and diligence- am labouring the analogy sorry

If you want to let an historic building it should have modern wiring, plumbing etc

All sorts of people live in HMO's now and everyone is vulnerable when it comes to fire and damp etc.

If succesive governments are abondoning generations to rent then tenants should have the rights to safe secure tenancies, we are creating slums and deathtraps.

Edited by hankdd

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  • 331 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
      • down 2.5%
      • Even
      • up 2.5%
      • up 5%



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