Owners urged to inspect their rental properties as annual Fire Safety Week takes place

The Irish Property Owners’ Association (IPOA ) is calling on all property owners to inspect their rental properties during Fire Safety Week which is presently ongoing.

Property owners should ensure that there is a fire blanket in the kitchen and that the fire alarms are in good working order. Remind tenants to test the fire alarms on a weekly basis, and check that there are no overloaded sockets. As part of that inspection they should be mindful of the Housing (Standards for Rented Houses ) Regulations 2019. These are the minimum standards required to be adhered to by all rental properties. By inspecting properties frequently Landlords can ensure that their rental properties continue to comply with the regulations.

“All rental properties must comply with Housing Standards when initially let and also during the tenancy. Frequent inspections ensure that items that need addressing are identified and dealt with in a timely manner. Landlords should be aware that there is a requirement for window restrictors on some windows and that there may be a need for appropriately placed carbon monoxide alarms. Fire Safety Week reminds us of our obligations and is an excellent time to inspect; contact your tenant and make an appointment. Bringing along a copy of the standards and checking them against the property would help identify any issues that require action,” Stephen Faughnan, Chairman, IPOA, stressed.

The IPOA call on the State to review the reporting procedure for inspections. The current system is a pass/fail situation which does not accurately reflect the accommodation available for rental in Ireland. This lets down landlords, tenants and the State.

Local authorities are responsible for inspecting rental property and have to work with the 100 percent correct or fail system. A blocked vent or no microwave in a property could result in a fail of a property that was refurbished to a high standard. What is required is a system that reflects the general standard and quality of rental accommodation in Ireland.

A certificate of compliance should be issued after a property is inspected by the local authority.

 

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