Monmouthshire County Council is responsible for the enforcement of private sector housing standards. The public health section of the Environmental Health department are responsible for;
- Assessing hazards within the private rented housing by carrying out assessments under The Housing Health and Safety Rating System (HHSRS) to ensure that any residential premises provides a safe and healthy environment for the current occupiers and any potential occupier or visitor. Landlord leaflet on HHSRS.
- Inspecting Houses in Multiple Occupation to ensure they comply with the relevant legislation and regulations to provide a safe and healthy environment for occupation.
- Providing advice and information for landlords and tenants.
The duties of a landlord include maintaining the exterior and structural elements of the property as well as the safe and efficient running of:
- water, gas and electricity supplies;
- personal hygiene, sanitation and drainage systems;
- heating the property; and
- heating water.
You can see more detailed information on landlord responsibilities on the central government website. Also available is a landlord handbook which provides a wide range of information needed for landlords.
Other useful information can be found below;
Gas Safety – http://www.hse.gov.uk/gas/landlords/index.htm
Electrical Safety – http://www.electricalsafetyfirst.org.uk/guides-and-advice/for-landlords/
Electrical Safety HSE – http://www.hse.gov.uk/electricity/maintenance/safety.htm
Registration and Licensing
Rent Smart Wales – are you complying?
Landlords and agents with properties in Monmouthshire County Council or any other part of Wales are reminded that Rent Smart Wales enforcement powers are now active.
The Welsh Government scheme, that is helping to raise standards in the private rented sector, requires all private landlords to register themselves and their properties. Landlords and Agents who let and manage property must also get a licence.
Since November 23, 2016, enforcement powers have been active and landlords and agents who are not complying with the law could face a variety of sanctions including prosecution, fixed penalty notices, rent stopping and rent repayment orders.
Local authorities across Wales, including Monmouthshire County Council are working with Rent Smart Wales to identify those still not complying with the law. Councils are now prosecuting those who have failed to comply.
If you are a landlord or agent yet to comply, don’t delay. It’s important that you take the necessary steps now to comply and avoid action.
If you are a tenant and want to check if your landlord and/or agent is complying, you can visit the Rent Smart Wales online public register here: https://www.rentsmart.gov.wales/en/check-register/.
If they are not registered, you can contact Rent Smart Wales here: https://www.rentsmart.gov.wales/en/contact/
For more information about Rent Smart Wales contact www.rentsmart.gov.wales/ or call 03000 133344
Houses in Multiple Occupation
A House in Multiple Occupation (HMO) is a building, or part of a building, that:
- is occupied by individuals who do not form a single household, and
- is occupied by those individuals as their only or main residence, and
- rent is payable by at least one of the occupiers, and
- two or more households share one or more basic amenities.
Purpose built blocks of self-contained flats are not HMOs, but houses or buildings that have been converted into a block of flats may be a HMO if:
- the standard of conversion does not comply with the 1991 Building Regulations; and
- less than two thirds of the flats are owner occupied.
You can find more information on Houses in Multiple Occupation on the central government website.
Licensing of Houses in Multiple Occupation
Landlords that own certain types of HMO have to apply for a license
HMO licensing lays down fire safety requirements and applies standards relating to kitchen and bathroom facilities. It sets maximum occupancy limits and controls ongoing management standards.
In Monmouthshire there is only one type of licensing – Mandatory Licensing
Mandatory licensing of houses in multiple occupation is a scheme that applies across the UK. The scheme only applies to houses in multiple occupation that meet the following criteria:
- The houses in multiple occupation or any part of it comprises three storeys or more; and
- It is occupied by five or more persons; and
- It is occupied by person living in two or more single households, with a sharing of facilities.
As the landlord of a property that meets the licensing criteria, it is your responsibility to contact the Council to apply for a license.
Fire Regulations in Rented Accommodation
- Depending on what type of property you rent out, different fire precaution requirements will apply. If you need advice on the type of fire precautions your property needs then please contact the Environmental Health Team or Alternatively, you can view the latest LACoRS Guidance entitled ‘HOUSING – FIRE SAFETY’ (Guidance on fire safety provisions for certain types of existing housing), issued by the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health in conjunction with The Chief Fire Officers Association.