London Fire Brigade

Renting and sharing

If you're renting a home or you're the landlord of a property, you need to make sure the it's well maintained and fire safe.  

Fire safety for Landlords

Under the 2004 Housing Act, if you are a landlord you must make sure there are adequate escape routes in the property you are renting out.

Depending on the size of the property, you may also have to fit smoke alarms and provide fire extinguishers.

By law, a landlord must:

  • Make sure that all the gas appliances provided are maintained in good order and that a Gas Safe engineer carries out a safety check each year
  • Maintain all electrical installations (fixed wiring etc.) and any electrical appliances provided (cookers, kettles etc.) and make sure they are safe to use
  • Make sure any furniture and furnishings provided meet the fire resistance regulations

Your local authority can give you more details about landlord obligations and can force landlord’s to provide adequate fire precautions.

Fire safety for Tenants

Here are some questions to ask your landlord about fire safety: 

  • Has the electrical wiring in the property been checked lately?
  • Are sockets, switches, light fittings and so on checked every year?
  • Is there a regular maintenance programme for gas heaters and appliances?
  • Are the chimneys and flues cleaned and checked regularly?
  • Is the house registered with the local authority as being lived in by more than one household (multiple occupation)?

You may not be able to force your landlord to do the necessary checks but, if you have any concerns, contact your local Citizens Advice Bureau or your local authority for further advice.

Student accommodation

Parents may wish to check the safety of student accommodation. If you have concerns about the standard of the accommodation you should contact the university for advice.

This leaflet from GOV.UK also provides safety tips for students living in rented accommodation.