Further to our previous blogs on the Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarm (Amendment) Regulations 2022, the Government has now issued guidance for landlords and tenants providing some clarity on how the regulations will apply in practice and pragmatic advice to assist with compliance.

The guidance covers a range of frequently asked questions, including:

  • what is meant by ‘equipping’ an alarm?
  • what types of alarms are required?
  • which tenancies are exempt from the regulations?
  • how the regulations will be enforced?
  • how the penalty will be applied to breaches? and
  • what to do if a tenant refuses to allow a landlord into the property to install or repair an alarm?

The guidance also clarifies key terms such as what is meant by a fixed combustion appliance and what constitutes living accommodation.

Importantly, the guidance reaffirms that there will be no grace period – compliance is required from 1 October 2022. The regulations will apply to all (non-exempt) occupied properties (including social housing properties) from 1 October 2022 and not just properties that are let from that date.

Significantly, the guidance makes it clear that once a registered provider of social housing becomes aware that they are in breach of the regulations, they should not only seek to rectify the breach as soon as practicable but must also refer their non-compliance to the regulator of social housing.

It is imperative that all registered providers of social housing now evaluate their position and take the steps necessary to ensure and evidence full compliance with the regulations; if they fail to do so by 1 October 2022, a report to the regulator of social housing will be required.

For detailed advice in relation to these issues, please do not hesitate to contact Lorna Kenyon-Pain.