Government to mandate fitting CO alarms

Agents should act now ahead of Carbon Monoxide alarm laws

Fitting carbon monoxide alarms is to become mandatory in social and private rented properties that use gas boilers or fires, Housing Minister Eddie Hughes MP has announced.

Forthcoming regulation changes will also require CO alarms to be fitted when new appliances such as gas boilers or fires are installed in any home.

Landlords and housing providers in social and private rented sectors will need to repair or replace smoke and CO alarms once they are told they are faulty, and smoke alarms must be fitted in all rented accommodation.

The reforms follow a commitment in the Social Housing White Paper, published last year. The White Paper set out proposals for wide-ranging reforms of the social housing sector which will drive up standards, including giving tenants a clear way to raise concerns and providing the regulator with stronger powers to take enforcement action.

The cost of the new requirements to install and maintain alarms will fall to property owners.

Eddie Hughes MP said: “Around 20 people are killed each year in accidental carbon monoxide poisoning, and many more through house fires – but we know that simple interventions can stop these needless deaths.

“I’m proud that the new rules being proposed will ensure even more homes are fitted with life-saving alarms. Whether you own your home, are privately renting or in social housing – everyone deserves to feel safe and this is an incredibly important step in protecting those at risk.”

Guidance relating to where alarms are fitted and to ensure alarms meet relevant standards will also be updated.

The reforms follow a 2-month consultation, and changes will be brought forward through the Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarm (England) Regulations 2015 and the statutory guidance (Approved Document J) supporting Part J of the Building Regulations.