New guidance to help private landlords prepare for updated housing standards
Guidance setting out private rented sector landlords’ responsibilities for ensuring their property meets updated standards has been published by the Scottish Government.
From 1 March 2024, all private rented properties will be required to have central heating, a kitchen with adequate space and facilities to prepare and store food, and common areas that are safe to use and properly maintained. Properties will also need a circuit breaker device that reduces the risk of electrocution and fire.
Existing requirements for safe gas and electrical systems will be extended to other types of fuel. Similar standards are already in place in the social rented sector.
The guidance also covers the action landlords must already take to prevent damp and mould.
Housing secretary Shona Robison said: “Landlords have one year to meet our updated Repairing Standard, which will improve the condition of private rented property, make homes safer and ensure consistency between the social and private rented sectors.
“The majority of private landlords will already be meeting these standards. The guidance published today will help landlords better understand their responsibilities and ensure those who do need to carry out works can do so in advance of the 1 March 2024 deadline.
“All rented homes are required to meet standards that ensure they are free from damp and mould, and this guidance will help us to ensure this happens in the private rented sector.”
The Repairing Standard, contained in the Housing (Scotland) Act 2006, covers the legal and contractual obligations of private landlords to ensure that their property meets a minimum physical standard.
The Standard was updated on 1 March 2019 to clarify existing legislation and to introduce new elements. Landlords have been given five years to carry out work to bring housing up to meet these new elements, with a statutory deadline of 1 March 2024.
The Scottish Government consulted on these changes ahead of time. An analysis of responses to this consultation is available here.