An HMO (house of multiple occupants) is subject to different fire safety rules and regulations than normal residential properties. Here Alphasafe Ltd are looking at what these HMO fire regulations are and how landlords and property managers can ensure they adhere to them.
Checklist to help landlords, property managers and designated responsible persons assess whether or not their HMO meets all relevant fire safety standards.
Fire Risk Assessments
One of the most effective ways to ensure that your property is safe for tenants is by arranging for a fire risk assessment from the experts at Alphasafe Ltd. In these assessments, an expert will inspect your property in meticulous detail, from the fire alarms to the fire safety knowledge of your staff. All findings will be recorded for you to review, and any necessary remedial action will be suggested and carried out where possible.
Fire alarms are crucial; they’re a building’s first line of defence against fire, and so your HMO must have working fire alarms on each floor. Fire alarm regulations for HMO properties vary depending on the size of the property in question.
HMO Fire Doors
It is compulsory for all HMOs to have self-closing fire doors. These fire doors should be fire-rated and in keeping with the 30 minute fire resistance criteria. The doors should also have a smoke seal and an intumescent strip on the top and bottom of the door – the former is designed to keep smoke out for as long as possible, and the intumescent strips expand when heated, which serves to keep the door in the frame, this provides the 30 minute fire resistance.
By ensuring that your HMO meets all relevant fire safety regulations, you are helping to keep your tenants safe, as well as making sure you avoid the significant punishments for breaching fire safety regulations, such as heavy fines and even prison sentences.
DO NOT LEAVE THINGS TO CHANCE, FIRES COST LIVES
As the responsible person you must carry out and regularly review a fire risk assessment of the premises. This will identify what you need to do to prevent fire and keep people safe.
You must keep a written record of your fire risk assessment if your business has 5 or more people.
The fire safety risk assessment chart gives more detailed Information about these steps you will need to consider:
You can do the fire risk assessment yourself with the help of standard fire safety risk assessment guides.
If you do not have the expertise or time to do the fire risk assessment yourself you need to appoint a ‘competent person’ to help, for example a professional risk assessor.
Your local fire and rescue authority might be able to give you advice if you’re not sure your risk assessment’s been carried out properly. However, they cannot carry out risk assessments for you.
You can download the guides on fire risk assessments by following the link below;
Most fires in the home can be prevented, by taking some basic and common sense precautions. This section will help you to inspect your home for anything that could cause a fire. You can then take the necessary actions to protect your home and the people who live in it. We have provided a list of the most common leaflets which are available to download. Should you require any of the leaflets as a hard copy, please ask at your local fire station who may have a small stock of many listed.
The visit will be carried out by a professional Alphasafe risk assessor who will be fully conversant with the current fire regulation. Alternatively the visit can be conducted by a dedicated safety team from our local office. Alternatively you will be able to call on your local fire department, who will carry out a free assessment of your home and supply you with smoke detectors where required.
The inspection of your home is not as intrusive as it sounds. We will visit your home, sit down and talk to you about many fire safety issues in your home, covering areas such as electrical safety, smoking and the use of electric blankets. We will then, with your permission, look at the various rooms within your home paying particular attention to areas such as overloaded plug sockets or wires trapped under carpets. We will also ensure that doors shut correctly and advise you of anything that needs addressing to make your home a safer one. You are welcome to ask any questions that you feel you need answering in respect of your home safety. We will also run through an escape plan if you do not already have one. You may qualify for free smoke alarms to be fitted within your home. We will carry this out completely free of charge and can fit them in a matter of minutes, ensuring you are safer from the moment we leave.