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Landlord Gas Safety Certificate
If you own a building in Scotland and have people other than your family staying there, you are required to provide a Gas Safety Certificate for your property. Also known as a CP12, this certificate confirms that all gas appliances are safe and free from danger, and is a legal requirement for landlords, owners of holiday homes and those who let rooms in their building.
What is a gas safety certificate, and who needs one?
Domestic homes which are owner occupied do not usually need a gas safety certificate in Scotland. However, if you rent a home, or part of it, you are legally obliged to commission an annual gas safety check. As well as private landlords who need a CP12 every year; you could also be liable to obtain one if you are:
- Running a hotel, bed and breakfast, hostel or Airbnb
- Responsible for student accommodation
- Operating a boarding school
- Managing a holiday let
- Running a mobile home, caravan or temporary accommodation that you let out
Are gas safety checks really important?
In Scotland, a large number of householders live in privately rented properties, a proportion which has increased dramatically over the past decade. In 2013, the estimated number of privately rented homes was in excess of 15 per cent of the total dwellings.
As a landlord, it is your moral and legal duty to ensure an annual inspection is carried out. You should also provide a CO (carbon monoxide) alarm in places where a gas appliance is located, according to amendments to the law in 2013. If you fail in your duty, you could be fined or imprisoned, and ultimately could be responsible for the death of your tenants.
Are you a tenant?
Are you a private tenant, or otherwise spending time in accommodation which you don’t own? Whether you’re renting a whole house, a room in a shared house or any type of holiday accommodation, the person who owns your accommodation should be carrying out a gas safety check and issuing a CP12 certificate each year.
The procedure of a gas safety check is quite simple. This does not form part of a property inspection, so there’s no reason to refuse access to our engineer, or otherwise make it hard for them to do their job. If you do, you could be putting yourself and your family at risk.
When you have a gas safety check, the engineer will be looking at:
- Whether the boiler is safe to use
- If there are any harmful fumes leaking from the flue, boiler or other appliance
- Pressure checks, to ensure your appliances are safe to use
- Security of the gas supply at your meter
The engineer will check all appliances and connections that belong to the owner of the property. They will not, however, check anything that you own. If you use a room heater or other appliance that you have brought into the property, so you are encouraged to make your own arrangements to have these checked for safety.
Is the landlord able to access a property for safety checks?
The contract you make with your tenant should allow you access for any maintenance or safety check work that needs to be done. You must not use force to enter the property. Further information is provided in regulation 39 of the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998.
A landlord has to show that they took all reasonable steps to comply with the law. HSE recommends the following actions and strongly advises that a record be kept of all correspondence with the tenants:
- Leave the tenant a notice stating that an attempt was made to complete the gas safety check and provide your contact details.
- Write to the tenant explaining that a safety check is a legal requirement and that it is for the tenant’s own safety. Give the tenant the opportunity to arrange their own appointment.
HSE inspectors will look for repeated attempts to complete the gas safety check, including the above suggestions; however the approach will need to be appropriate to each circumstance. It would ultimately be for a court to decide if the action taken was reasonable depending upon the individual circumstances.find out more