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reading later this month.
Save Lives Mr Raynsford, a former fire service minister, is convinced that the bill will save lives. He says that figures indicate only 82% of private rented homes have a working fire alarm installed, as opposed to 89% of council homes and 93% of housing association properties.
Cost a Factor MPs against the bill believe that making fire alarms mandatory in rented homes will increase the regulatory burden on landlords. Conservative MP Philip Davies said it was unrealistic to expect landlords to inspect their properties regularly in order to make sure smoke alarms were still working. He also questioned how landlords could be held responsible if tenants removed the batteries from smoke alarms or otherwise tampered with them. However, My Reynsford described the arguments as ‘wholly unconvincing’ and pointed out that fitting a smoke alarm with a 10 year battery was hardly expensive.
Annual Smoke Alarm Checks If the fitting of smoke alarms becomes mandatory for rented homes, there is no reason why landlords shouldn’t inspect smoke alarms at the same time as they do their annual gas check. It may also be prudent to install wired smoke alarms instead of cheaper models fitted with batteries. This will prevent tenants removing batteries for any reason.