Renting out a property is a great opportunity to maximise income, but it comes with a wide range of responsibilities. When renting your property to guests, it’s vital to understand your legal obligations to your tenants.
The laws and regulations which apply may differ in your city or country, and there might be separate rules if your property is part of a community building.
With short-term letting, there are additional safety precautions to take into consideration, and making sure you are compliant with these safety checks is crucial for your business. That’s why we’ve compiled a checklist of some of the most important things to consider regarding your property’s safety!
Fire safety rules and checking procedures in a rental property
Safety should be your number one priority, and a full fire-risk assessment should be carried out before any tenants stay in your property. There are different fire safety rules and regulations in England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales so be sure to do some research ahead of time to familiarise yourself with what is required.
- Make sure you reduce the risk of fire by removing fire hazards.
- Make sure you have working smoke alarms fitted throughout the property, and inform guests about the escape plan should a fire occur.
- Smoking can be a fire risk if guests are not careful, so be sure to establish a smoking policy.
- Adding a fire extinguisher and fire-retardant blanket isn’t a requirement, but can be an important add-on to your property should a fire issue arise.
It’s worth noting than safety-minded guests may also be filtering properties based on whether they have a smoke detector or a fire extinguisher.
If you’re considering letting with Keey, we can help arrange a fire-safety check and provide smoke detectors for you through our vetted partners!
Carbon monoxide & gas safety check
You should consider installing carbon monoxide detectors, especially if the property has a solid fuel heating system, gas appliances or an open log fire or stove. Likewise, making sure to have a recent gas safety check, as well as servicing your boiler once a year, are important safety checks to carry out.
Remove any electrical or accessibility hazards
Take steps to minimise hazards throughout the property, reducing the chance of an accident or a fall. You could welcome a range of guests into your home, and some may have access requirements that makes them less able to stand or walk, or are less likely to be aware of the potential hazards.
- Eliminate hazardous electrical wires.
- Install handles or railings near stairs and give warnings for any low ceilings and uneven flooring.
- It can also be a good idea to add an anti-slip carpet to your shower or bathtub, as well as railings to minimise the risk of a fall.
First-aid kit and emergency numbers
It’s important to provide a well-stocked first aid kit in case tenants have any medical emergencies while staying in your property. You should also include phone numbers of the local emergency services and health centres in the house manual and welcome pack, for your visitors to use if required.
There are pros and cons to managing a pet-friendly rental property. If your property is located in an apartment building, it is recommended that you check the current rules in your building regarding pets before allowing guests to bring animals into the property.
The negative aspects to allowing pets is that they can increase the wear and tear in your property, as well as disturb your neighbours, so consider speaking to them about your plans. A positive aspect of allowing pets is that it can help your tenants feel more at home in your property.
If you decide to have a pet-friendly property then include relevant guidelines, such as keeping dogs on leads, cleaning up after them and where to find pet supplies. You should also be aware that you’ll likely have to pay more for professional cleaning services to maintain your property if pets are permitted to stay.
Whether you are renting out your home for a few nights a year or on a permanent basis, the safety of your guests should be your most important concern. As outlined above, ensure you provide all necessary information to your guests. Inform them what they can and can’t do, what they need to be aware of and how they can best ensure their safety when staying at your property.
If you need help managing your property, our experts are here to help!