Landlords have a responsibility under the law to ensure that pipework, appliances and flues in their properties, which are provided for their tenants, are maintained by a gas safe registered engineer. This responsibility extends to ensuring that an annual gas safety check is performed every year by a properly registered gas safe engineer. Furthermore the landlord must maintain a record of this safety check and keep copies of this for two years. A copy of the inspection must also be provided to each tenant within 28 days of the safety check being carried out (existing tenants) or to new tenants when they arrive.
In addition to covering your legal responsibility, as a landlord you will be wanting to ensure that any breakdown to your boiler or heating is repaired quickly. Tenants can become very annoyed if the heating fails and repairs are delayed. Landlord boiler cover is designed to offer a speedy response at a fixed cost to landlords. Typical landlord boiler cover policies will incorporate the costs of boiler breakdown parts and Labour together with any call out charge which would have been levied by the heating engineer when they attended the property.
It is understandable that you will want to search for the cheapest landlord boiler cover, or to seek landlord boiler cover comparisons but you should also bear in mind that the safety of your tenants is covered in law. Accordingly you want to contract a responsible boiler cover supplier rather than seeking out the cheapest landlord cover in the market.
The gas appliances covered by these legal requirements are those that you own and have provided for the use of your tenants in your properties. If the tenant brings their own gas appliance, for example a gas fire, whilst you continue to have responsibility for the pipework in the property and associated installation components as the law currently stands you would not have responsibility for the gas fire.
Notwithstanding this you need to protect your position and it is a good idea to send a reminder to the tenant on an annual basis pointing out that their gas appliance should be checked for safety and serviced annually by a gas safe registered heating engineer or plumber. In this instance it would be advisable if the tenant took out their own boiler cover or, taking into account the costs within your tenancy agreement, you could take out landlord boiler cover to ensure that all items in the property are properly serviced.
Remember, even when the tenant is using their own gas appliance the flue, chimney and the ventilation are your responsibility and should be included within your landlords gas safety check.
National landlord boiler cover suppliers offer integrated boiler cover and gas safety checks as part of their landlord services. The annual gas safety check (CP12) should include an inspection of your boiler and the associated gas pipe work (or gas fire if appropriate) and also a gas safety certificate which will be issued after a satisfactory inspection. The boiler cover element should include the service of the gas appliance (boiler or gas fire) and the relevant gas pipe work. Breakdown cover of the appliance will also be included and give you peace of mind as, for the monthly fee, you should have the costs of the breakdown, parts and Labour together with callout fees fully covered.
The safety regulations stipulate that a landlord most use a gas safe registered engineer for the these statutory safety checks and relevant boiler maintenance. When this work is being carried out in respect of equipment provided to your tenants you cannot use any ordinary plumber, such as your friend from the local squash club. The awarding of the gas safe registration is an indication of the skill level of the heating engineer or plumber and confirms to you that they are competent to work on gas appliances.
Don’t overlook the requirement for landlord boiler cover. It is a basic requirement for any landlord and the penalties are severe if you do not comply. Take out cover with a national company and look for cash savings in other parts of your tenancy agreements.