Landlord Responsibilities in Scotland
Landlords are defined as people who rent out a property to tenants, whether a house or a flat. As a result, they have authority over the property, which comes with a range of responsibilities that ensure the tenant is safe and that the house is of a good standard. In Scotland alone, there are over 245,000 registered landlords, which demonstrates how crucial they are in the housing industry and magnifies how many tenants are in need and highlights how crucial it is for landlords to be accountable and communicative. So, what are their primary landlord responsibilities in Scotland?
Landlord Responsibilities in Scotland
What are the Primary Landlord Responsibilities in Scotland?
1. Maintaining Standards
As stated in the Housing Act 2006, landlords in Scotland must ensure that the accommodation is ‘habitable’. This means that the fundamental human requirements, like sleeping, eating and living, must be met by providing enough living space for tenants to rest, cook and relax. Of course, accidents can happen inside the property after the tenants have moved in, which are beyond the landlord’s control, but the landlord is responsible for upkeeping and therefore should repair the destruction caused.
For example, if the roof was faulty and water damage made it slowly start collapsing, there is a danger of the tenant being put at physical risk, and so the landlord should be made aware immediately. They should repair this structural damage as soon as possible; however, the tenants should be given at least one day to prepare for the landlord coming and organise their day accordingly.
2. Energy Performance Certificate
Landlords are responsible for obtaining an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) so that if any legal figures or tenants wish to see it, it is at hand. Prospective tenants often request to see the EPC because it outlines how well the property uses energy and whether it is efficient in doing so to consider this before renting and decide if they can afford the energy bills. This certificate must be acquired from a registered assessor after evaluating the property, after which they can provide a certificate.
The EPC contains information on the estimated head demand, low carbon energy sources, water efficiency, heating, walls, floors and windows, and lastly, it include recommended ways to improve. For example, you could use renewable energy sources like a biomass boiler or solar panels, add insulation, or double-glazed the windows if you have not already. A score is given, A being the highest and G being the lowest, and landlords cannot rent if they receive an F.
3. Legionella Risk Assessment
The Legionella Risk Assessment is a legal requirement in Scotland. The landlord must evaluate the property by checking for any risk factors that could lead to water contamination with Legionella. This could go on to physically harm any tenants that inhale or aspire the polluted water, putting them at risk of developing pneumonia and several severe long-term health implications.
In the assessment, landlords must recognise the risk factors like water between 20-50 ° C, organic matter water, outlets not flushed regularly, and water flowing throughout all pipes without blockages or stops. Lastly, tenants should be aware of this assessment, and the above advice should be given to them. It is encouraged to review these risks and provide a new risk assessment every two years; however, if necessary, they can be done more frequently, especially if the tenants have concerns or are immunocompromised.
4. Legal Responsibilities
Tenants have some responsibilities which are legal requirements and must be done. For example, they must register with the council in the area and provide information such as the address of the property they are renting and their full name and address. They must also give the tenants their full name and address so that the occupants can reach them if they have a query or emergency, as landlords are responsible for repairs that the tenants did not cause and hence much be accessible.
The tenancy agreement should be explicit and given to the tenants, including the exact rent, terms and conditions, and must be signed. If landlords wish to change the rent, the tenants must be aware at least three months in advance, and if they are to be evicted for any reason which breaks the tenancy agreement, at least one months’ notice.
Landlord Responsibilities in Scotland – To Conclude
In conclusion, landlords in Scotland have an array of responsibilities. These are beneficial because they provide the tenants with safety and peace of mind, but they also ensure that all landlords are subject to the same obligations and perform to a high standard.
Find out more about the importance of insurance here.
Other useful links about Business Insurance:
Multi-Property Landlord Insurance
Cheap Landlord Insurance
Commercial Landlord Insurance
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