Breadcrumb

Health and safety standards for landlords

Health and safety standards for landlords

You must keep the property you rent safe and free from health hazards.

The Housing Health and Safety Ratings System (HHSRS)

A landlord is responsible for the provision, state and proper working order of:

  • The exterior and structural elements of the dwelling, including all elements essential to the dwelling including access, amenity spaces, the common parts within the landlords control, associated outbuildings, garden, yard walls etc.
  • The installations within and associated with the dwelling for:
    • the supply and use of water, gas and electricity
    • personal hygiene, sanitation and drainage
    • food safety
    • ventilation
    • space heating and heating water

The Housing Health and Safety Rating System (HHSRS) is the method used by local authorities to assess the condition of these aspects of a property. The HHSRS is not a standard which the property must meet, but a system to assess the likely risk of harm that could occur from any ‘deficiency’ associated with a house or flat.

Hazards

A hazard is any risk of harm to the health or safety of an actual or potential occupier that arises from a deficiency. If a hazard presents a severe threat to health or safety, we must take appropriate enforcement action in relation to the hazard.

For more information on the HHSRS contact us on private.housing@bristol.gov.uk 

Responsibilities for gas and electrical safety

Gas

You must have gas appliances checked for safety by a  Gas Safe registered engineer within 12 months of their installation. You need to have further checks at least once every twelve months after that.

Electrical installations

You must ensure the electrical installations in your rented property are safe. This includes getting an electrical safety report (typically an electrical installation condition report or EICR) at least every five years.

You must give your tenants copy of the report:

  • before they start their tenancy, for new tenants
  • within 28 days, for existing tenants

You must also send us a copy of the report within 7 days if we ask you to. Email private.housing@bristol.gov.uk.

If the electrical safety report says that work is needed to make the electrical installations safe, you must: 

  • do this work within 28 days, or the timeframe specified in the report, if that's shorter
  • send us evidence that the work has been done, along with the original electrical safety report, email private.housing@bristol.gov.uk

Read the full guidance for electrical safety standards on GOV.UK.

Loans to help meet housing and licensing standards

Loans are available to private landlords to assist with the costs of bringing your rented property up to standard.

If you own a licensable property and need to improve your property to meet licensing standards or your gas or electrical safety inspection required essential improvements for the safety of your tenants, you can apply for a loan funded by Bristol City Council but delivered by our partners Lendology CIC. 

  • Loans are available up to a maximum £15,000 per property on a capital and interest repayment basis.
  • The interest rate is 4% fixed throughout the term of the loan.
  • Maximum repayment term is five years.
  • Owners must have sufficient equity in the property to cover the loan and continue to let the property.
  • The loan is secured with District Land Registry and if the property is sold during the term of the loan, the loan must be repaid in full.

To apply:

Furnishings and fire safety

A landlord must  make sure furniture and furnishings they supply are fire safe.

Energy Performance Certificates

See Energy Performance Certificates for landlords.