If you already rent a room in a house share property or are looking to rent a room please, please ensure that your landlord has at least put a basic level of fire protection in the property for you. Unfortunately many landlords do not know what protection they need to provide for their tenants when they are renting individual rooms. Research shows that tenants that rent individual rooms are more likely to live in a property where a fire could occur due to the nature of the independant relationship that house sharing tenants have unlike a cohesive family unit that live together.

At a very basic level this protection usually consists of fire doors on all the bedrooms, kitchen and essentially any doors which open out onto a means of escape. Sound, well fitted fire doors will give you at least 30 minutes fire protection should there be a fire in the property. Fire doors can also have smoke seals and intumescent strips which also provide further protection from the smoke that a fire generates.

Fire doors should also come with some sort of self closing mechanism. These can be the overhead door closers or inbuilt chain or ‘perko’ closers. As a tenant it can be frustrating that the doors always try to close behind you but that door being closed can be the difference between stopping a fire spreading and giving you the time and opportunity to get out of the building. Please do not prop open any fire doors!! In our properties we have Dorgard’s which do prop the communal fire doors open but they will automatically release the doors when the fire alarm goes off.

Again, at the basic level you should have mains wired, interlinked smoke detectors in the communal areas of the property e.g. the hallway, landing, living room etc. There should also be a heat detector in the kitchen which does not go off with smoke but detects when the room gets to a certain temperature to indicate that it is likely that a fire has started.

Mandatory Licensing of certain types of properties came into force in England in April 2006. This ensured that all properties with 3 or more storeys AND 5 or more people would have to have a License from the Council for the Landlord to rent out individual rooms in that property. Properties with 3 or more storeys require more fire, health and safety standards possibly including emergency lighting, fire control panel system and all the basic requirements including smoke detectors in all the habitable rooms in the property. Please click here to find out more.

If you are looking for house share accommodation in Chelmsford please don’t just focus on the cost of the room but also ask the landlord questions about the fire safety measures in the property and if it appears that there are no fire doors or smoke alarms then please do not rent a room from them. You can also report that property or landlord to the Council if you suspect that they are not providing the neccessary standards of accommodation.

To rent a room in a high quality, low cost, all inclusive house share in Chelmsford please contact us.