One of a landlord’s most important compliance obligations is gas safety. Failure to comply with basic safety requirements can result in serious consequences, such as substantial fines, possible criminal charges, and in extreme cases, danger of serious injury or death to tenants. To ensure all properties are kept to the highest gas safety standard, all landlords or managing agents are required to provide annual gas safety certificates to tenants confirming that all appliances and associated pipework and installations in the property are fit for purpose.
To learn more about gas safety certificates and what they entail, see our FAQ down below.
What is a gas safety certificate?
A gas safety certificate is a safety inspection record that landlords are legally required to obtain and provide to tenants by the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998. The certificate requires annual inspections of every gas appliance, all gas pipework, flues etc. on your property, along with the written results of all inspections. The gas safety certificate must list any safety issues that were identified and any remedial action that was required as a result. The document will also include the name and signature of the engineer who carried out the inspection, along with the inspection date, property address, and landlord name.
How do I get a gas safety certificate?
To get a gas safety certificate, you must book an appointment with an appropriately licensed engineer listed on the Gas Safe Register, the only official gas registration body in the UK. Only registered gas engineers and businesses who have been approved by the GSR are legally permitted to carry out work on gas appliances and installations. Gas Safe engineers should have a valid ID card on hand to show their credentials.
Once the engineer completes the inspection, including a visual check on all accessible pipework and gas appliances, as well as a gas leak check, you will be provided with a CP12 gas. You can find a local Gas Safe engineer here.
What are the landlord’s legal obligations?
Landlords are required to ensure all gas equipment at the property has been properly installed and inspected by a licensed Gas Safe engineer. Landlords are also legally required to arrange annual gas safety inspections for each appliance and flue in the property, as well as provide a record of the gas safety check to tenants within 28 days of the check or before new tenants move in (in writing or electronically). Landlords are responsible for the ongoing maintenance of any gas fittings or flues in the property to ensure that they remain in a safe condition.
Landlords also must keep records of gas safety checks until two further checks have been completed. At times, records might be kept for more than two years.
When do I need to arrange a gas safety inspection?
Gas safety checks are required to take place annually for every appliance/flue located on the property. Annual gas checks can be carried out between 10 to 12 months from the previous check. Before the start of a new tenancy, the latest gas safety inspection must have been carried out within one year of the new lease start date.
How much do gas safety certificates cost?
The cost of your gas safety check will depend on how many appliances you have, where you live, and who will carry out the inspection. For smaller properties, the gas safety certificate costs £35 to £80 whereas a larger property inspection, with more appliances, will cost approximately £120 to £150. The UK average for gas safety certificate costs is £75 - £90.
What happens if my property fails a gas safety inspection?
In the event your property fails the gas safety inspection, specific problem areas will be addressed in the report, along with the required . Landlords are required to resolve the issues as soon as possible. Gas and heating defects are serious issues that should be tended to immediately. Ask your Gas Safe engineer to elaborate on any part of the report you find confusing and to recommend what to do next.
In some cases, the engineer may be able to resolve the issue while still onsite (at an extra cost and with your approval). However, if specific parts must be ordered or substantial labour is required, then it will take longer to remedy the issue. Whatever the case, it is important to keep records demonstrating that you are taking all reasonable steps to resolve the problem as soon as possible.
What are the penalties for non-compliance?
Penalties for non-compliance include unlimited fines and/or six months of imprisonment. The average fine is around £6,000. In certain cases, the hazardous situation created by noncompliance can result in enforcement actions, including local authority sanctioned emergency remedial action.
In the most serious cases, a landlord can be charged with manslaughter if their negligence on gas safety matters leads to the death of a tenant at their property. The potential danger to life and property from failures to comply with gas safety legislation are extremely serious, so the associated penalties for failing to meet your obligations are significant.
What are some best practice tips for gas safety?
Stay on top of your gas safety obligations with these tips.
- Be organized - Keep a record of past gas safety certificates along with the current one. Ensure that the records you provide your tenants with are up to date. Mark down a calendar reminder for your next gas safety inspection.
- Address any problem areas - When you feel concerned about the safety of an appliance, do not wait until the annual inspection date to take action. Maintaining gas safety standards requires constant vigilance. During annual inspections, have the Gas Safe engineer explain any parts of the certificate you don’t understand. Additionally, clarify with the engineer the scope and urgency of any further action items that might need to be taken regarding one of your appliances.
- Clearly communicate with tenants - if an annual gas safety inspection is to take place during a tenancy, ask your tenants for permission to enter the property. Explain the importance of the inspection and provide all necessary details about the appointment.
A landlord’s main responsibility is to make sure their tenants are living in a secure and safe environment. Gas safety is a critical legal obligation and regular checks must be carried out with proper diligence. Make sure to stay organized by keeping all required records of past gas safety certificates and communicating any concerns to your Gas Safe engineer to arrange a speedy resolution.
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