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Extension to the Regulations for Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarms

The UK Government has published its response to its consultation on proposals to amend the Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarm Regulations 2015

On 23 November 2021 the UK Government published its response to its consultation on proposals to amend the Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarm (England) Regulations 2015 (SI 2015/1693). These will now extend the rules for domestic smoke and carbon monoxide alarm regulations within all rented accommodation in England to now include public sector landlords and introduces new requirements in respect of the type of alarms used.

The key changes are:

  • smoke alarms will now be mandatory in all social rented homes, landlords will be obliged to ensure at least one smoke alarm is installed on each storey of an individual property
  • carbon monoxide alarms will be mandatory in any room with a fixed combustion appliance (excluding gas cookers) in both private and social rented homes
  • carbon monoxide alarms will also be mandatory upon installation of any heating appliance (excluding gas cookers) in any home and all tenures by law through building regulations
  • landlords will be legally obliged to repair or replace alarms once informed they are faulty (testing will however remain the resident’s responsibility).

Alongside this new legislation, the UK Government will also amend the statutory guidance (Approved Document J) supporting Part J of the Building Regulations relating to types of alarms to use and their placement to ensure that all alarms meet the relevant standards.

Subject to parliamentary time scales, the Government will amend the 2015 Regulations. Once in effect these new requirements will come into force as soon as practicable with no grace period given for compliance.

Whilst there has been a high level of support for these measures to be in place, and they will ensure greater protection for homes in England, it will potentially require a lot of work for some social housing landlords to meet these new standards. As such, this response the consultation allows for forward planning to begin and a head start on the works required.

Contact our social housing solicitors today for dedicated advice and support for registered providers.

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