If you are living in a shared house, you may not be aware that your landlord has extra responsibilities towards you. So, if you are living in a shared house, you will have extra protection under the law.
Shared Houses or a ‘House in Multiple Occupation’ (HMO)
There a number of living arrangements which can be counted as HMOs, but at a basic level you are likely to be living in an HMO there are three or more people living in the property who are unrelated and form at least two different households. You will also be sharing a kitchen and/or bathroom with the other tenants.
Examples of HMOs:-
– Shared student housing (not usually halls)
– Shared house or flat
– A house divided into multiple bedsits
You may not be sure what kind of property you are living in, and therefore may not know your legal rights. If this is the case contact a free government advice service or a specialist property lawyer for help.
A landlord of any property has the following responsibilities:-
– Repairs to the structure of the property
– Repairs to the property’s exterior
– The water, gas and electric
– The heating system
Extra Responsibilities for Landlords of Shared Houses
Your landlord must ensure a number of things are carried out to comply with legal regulations regarding HMOs.
– Once a year your landlord must carry out a gas safety check
– Every 5 years your landlord must carry out a full check of the electrics
– Your property must not be overcrowded – this is commonly a problem in London properties where too many people are allowed to live in one property by its landlord
– The property must comply with fire safety regulations – this means smoke detectors must be fitted in each bedroom and in each communal area. The kitchen must have a heat detector fitted.
– Shared facilities/communal areas must be in good repair
– There must be enough rubbish bins for the number of tenants
What If My Landlord Is Avoiding These Responsibilities?
If your landlord is not fulfilling his responsibilities to you, you should contact the environmental health department of your local council and you should also contact a lawyer who specialises in landlord and tenant law. You should not have to live in an unsafe property and your landlord can be taken to court if they are breaking the law.
If you are concerned that your landlord is not fulfilling his responsibilities to you, contact solicitors at Roskell Davies. Experts at Roskell Davies have a wealth of experience in dealing with common landlord and tenant disputes. For a full list landlord and tenant dispute resolutions, click here.
To speak with one of our experts, call us free on 0800 142 2901 or fill out our free online enquiry form.