Concerning new research has revealed that there is still a lack of awareness in the private rental sector in regards to the recent changes in regulation about smoke and carbon monoxide alarms.
A survey conducted by flat and house share site SpareRoom.co.uk on tenants living in shared accommodation found that just 57% are convinced that they have a working smoke alarm in their property.
The investigation was carried out after the 1st October, when the Smoke and Carbon Monoxide (England) Regulations came into force.
However, 15% of tenants questioned said that they do not have a smoke alarm in their home. A further 16% said they had alarms, but are not sure they are working. 5% said they do not know if there is an alarm in their property or not.
Landlords are not solely to blame, with 7% of tenants admitting to actually removing the batteries from the alarms themselves!
The table below shows the results from the survey:
|Flat and house sharers were asked: Do you have a smoke alarm in your house or flatshare? (1,060 responses)
|Yes but I don’t know if it’s working
|Yes but we’ve taken the batteries out
Concern over smoke alarm awareness
‘Fitting working smoke and carbon monoxide detectors is now a legal requirement for landlords, yet half remain none the wiser,’ noted Matt Hutchinson, director of SpareRooms.co.uk. ‘Professional landlords are the most likely to be clued up on this regulatory change, but the Government will have its work cut out to educate those who don’t already have working alarms in their properties to make them aware of the new rules.’
Hutchinson also noted that, ‘fire safety isn’t just the landlord’s responsibility. The fact that 7% of tenants have taken the batteries out of their smoke alarm is a real worry. Tenants have to do their bit to keep themselves, their housemates and the property safe.’