Insurance, Pets, Legionella, Smoke Alarms and other FAQ’s

Here is some useful information with all you need to know

Insurance

The Landlord will maintain insurance for the building and contents within the inventory. If you are a tenant in a rental property, you must insure your own possessions and if you cause any damage to any of the Landlord’s items these will be charged to you. You will be required to provide us a copy of your insurance policy should you decided to Let a property through us. If you would like us to assist you in finding a competitive contents insurance quote, please ask us for details.

Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detectors

New regulations affecting all rental properties regarding smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors have come into place. There has been a great deal of confusion  recently regarding the changes all properties must now comply. The main regulations are as follows:

Smoke Alarms

All properties must be equipped with a smoke alarm on each storey of the premises where there is a room used as living accommodation

Carbon Monoxide Detectors

A carbon monoxide detector must be supplied in any room in the premises which is used as living accommodation and contains a solid fuel burning combustion appliance. This applies to any wood burning stove , coal fires or gas fires in addition to the gas or oil boiler.

More information can be found at www.legislation.gov.uk.

LEGIONELLA AND LANDLORD’s RESPONSIBILITIES

What is Legionella?
Legionnaires’ disease is a potentially fatal form of pneumonia caused by the inhalation of small droplets of contaminated water containing Legionella. All man-made hot and cold water systems are likely to provide an environment where Legionella can grow. Where conditions are favourable (ie suitable growth temperature range; water droplets (aerosols) produced and dispersed; water stored and/or recirculated; some ‘food’ for the organism to grow such as rust, sludge, scale, biofilm etc) then the bacteria may multiply thus increasing the risk of exposure. It is a simple fact that the organism will colonise both large and small systems so both require risks to be managed effectively.

The law is clear that if you are a landlord and rent out your property (or even a room within your own home) then you have legal responsibilities to ensure the health and safety of your tenant by keeping the property safe and free from health hazards.

The risks from hot and cold water systems in most residential settings are generally considered to be low owing to regular water usage and turnover. However there is a duty to assess the risk

Property left whilst on holiday or vacant properties can often be the highest at risk, please ask Cobb Amos to help you with a risk assessment.


Pets

Pets are not allowed as standard. Some landlords will allow pets by negotiation. We will do what we can to be flexible where possible and help you find a suitable property for you and your pet. See the following top tips to show that you are a responsible pet owner and you need to rent:


Be honest
Don’t keep a pet in a property without the landlord’s consent, or more pets than agreed. This will only lead to problems in the future and could result in the termination of your tenancy. Always be honest about your pets from the start.

Offer to have the property professionally cleaned
Landlords often worry that accepting pets will cause problems later on especially if the next tenant is allergic to animal hair. Also there are horror stories about flea infestations, excess pet hair, plus dirty carpets and soft furnishings. You will be required to pay for the property to be professionally cleaned when you move out to mitigate this.

Give yourself time
Begin searching at least 6-8 weeks before you need to move out of your current home, as there are a reduced number of properties that will accept pets.

Be as flexible as possible
The more restrictive your search criteria are, the more difficult it will be for you to find a pet-friendly property. Try to be flexible on location and property type as this will increase your chances of finding somewhere for you and your pet to live.

Provide pet references
By providing a reference from your previous landlord, you can show that your pet is well behaved and has caused no problems at your previous property. This will demonstrate that you are a responsible pet owner.

Introduce your pet
Meeting your pet in advance may put your landlord’s mind at ease. You could invite your landlord or agent to your current home so they can see that your pet has caused no problems there. This is particularly important for dogs as it’s an opportunity to show your dog is well behaved.

Offer to pay a higher deposit
Many landlords are concerned about pets causing damage to their property or furnishings. By offering to pay a higher deposit, you will reassure the landlord that you will cover any damage that your pet may cause.

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