Minimum Property Standards Checklist

    This quick checklist is based on the law in July 2014. It will help you to identify most significant risks yourself. Please note – specific requirements will vary depending on your Council, if you are unsure about any of the requirements below, or have any other concerns about the property you should contact your local Council. If your answer is No to any of the following questions/statements the property may not meet the minimum legal requirements, so you should take action to make sure the property is compliant with the law.

    Planning

  • Do you have the correct planning permission for the current use of the property? Some newly shared houses may need planning permission. (Contact your local Council Planning Department if you are unsure)
  • EPC

  • Does the property have a current Energy Performance Certificate (EPC)?
  • Is the EPC score E or higher?
  • Heating

  • Does the property have a fixed heating system (i.e. gas boiler & radiators, or storage heaters) in good repair, with sufficient power output to heat all bedrooms and any lounges, a timer or programmer, and a device to control room temperature – e.g. thermostat?
  • Is the heating easily controllable by the Tenant?
  • Food safety

    Does the property have adequate:
  • hot and cold water?
  • a surface to prepare food?
  • food storage and provision for cooking and refrigeration?
  • Insulation

  • Do the windows & doors appear to be in good repair and free from excessive draughts?
  • If there is a loft or loft room, is it insulated sufficiently? (100mm minimum if gas central heating or 200mm minimum if electric heating)
  • Fire

  • If there are shared communal parts (Halls Stair landings, shared Kitchens or Living rooms etc.) a written Fire Safety Risk Assessment is required. Has a written Fire Safety Risk Assessment been completed?
  • For single family houses - Does the property have a mains operated fire alarm system, or 10 year life sealed battery smoke detectors in hallways and landings on each level?
  • For 3 storey family houses – does the property have mains wired interlinked smoke detectors located in the ground floor hall, first floor landing and second floor landing?
  • For shared houses or bedsit accommodation – do fire precautions meet requirements of LACORS guidance on Fire Safety?
  • Gas

  • Is there a satisfactory current Landlord Gas Safety certificate for all gas appliances provided?
  • Is there a Carbon Monoxide alarm? This is expected to become a legal requirement soon.
  • Solid fuel/oil

  • Do you have evidence of servicing and maintenance of all solid fuel appliances by a HETAS/OFTEC engineer within the last 12 months?
  • Electricity

  • In the last 5 years has the property had a current satisfactory electrical condition report which indicates that the property is free from dangerous or potentially dangerous faults? (This is a legal requirement in a House in Multiple Occupation (HMO), and expected to be required by law for all rental property soon.)
  • On a visual inspection of the electrical installation and appliances, you should ensure there are no obvious hazards such as: broken or loose sockets, burn marks, unavoidable overloading, exposed wires or live conductors, cracked or broken light pendants, sockets too close to water
  • Security

  • Do the windows and doors appear to be in a good condition and can they be adequately secured?
  • Condensation & mould

  • Is there sufficient ventilation in the kitchen, bedrooms, living room and bathroom (an openable window or mechanical extraction fan in a kitchen or bathroom)?
  • Are rooms free of extensive black mould growth (over a whole wall or more)?
  • Personal hygiene

  • Is there at least one inside flushing toilet in working condition?
  • Is there a wash hand basin with hot and cold running water in the same room as each toilet?
  • Is there at least one bath with hot and cold running water or a shower cubicle with a working shower?
  • Furniture

  • Does any furniture and soft furnishings supplied comply with the legal fire resistant standard? (E.g. sofas, mattresses must have labels proving they comply with regulations.)
  • Falls

  • Is the property free from tripping and falling hazards? (E.g. Stairs with no hand rails, raised and uneven floor surfaces, windows that should have window restrictors to prevent falls.)
  • Asbestos

  • If there are any shared common parts to building has a competent person assessed whether there are any asbestos containing materials that you need to manage?
  • Repair

  • Is the property in reasonable repair?
  • HMO

  • If the house or flat is shared by 3 unrelated people is it well managed (decoration, cleanliness, maintenance, equipment and facilities in good working order, common parts free from obstruction)? Please note it is a criminal offence if HMO Management Regulations are not met unless the manager has a reasonable excuse.
  • Licensing (mandatory)

  • If the house or flat is (1) three or more storeys, (2) occupied by five or more unrelated people who (3) share facilities with others then it is likely to require a licence. If yes do you have, or have you applied for, a licence?
  • Licensing (discretionary)

  • If the accommodation is within an area subject to a discretionary licensing scheme, does it need and have a licence? If yes do you have, or have you applied for, a licence?
  • Overcrowding

  • Will the number of people occupying meet the bedroom standard below?
  • - One bedroom for up to two persons
    - Two bedrooms for up to four persons
    - Three bedrooms for up to six persons
    - Four bedrooms for up to seven persons.
  • Is the Living area big enough space for the household occupying to carry out normal activities including space for a child to do educational activities such as homework?
  • Do the bedrooms meet or exceed an area of 6.5 m2 (Single) and 9.5m2 (Double)
  • Please note: As every property is different, if the Council carries out an inspection there may be other hazards identified which would also require action. Further information for landlords is available from your local Council