Property Standards

The following outlines the standards your property needs to meet to be acceptable for My Blackpool Home. These standards are made up of set regulations, service requirements and recommendations. Our criterion is that the property is safe, in good repair and has reasonably modern amenities.

My Blackpool Home Property Standards

 

The following outlines the standards your property needs to meet to be acceptable for My Blackpool Home. These standards are made up of set regulations, service requirements and recommendations. Our criterion is that the property is safe, in good repair and has reasonably modern amenities.

Although the list may be extensive most of the requirements are standard within most modern properties, and some will not be applicable to the type of property you are letting. If you have any concerns or want to clarify any details please contact us on 01253 477222 or email hello@myblackpoolhome.co.uk

Decoration & Finishes

Internal decoration must be in good condition, In addition:

  • Wall surfaces must be painted and/or papered.
  • Painted surfaces must be clean and free from obvious marking, dirt etc.
  • Wood must be free from rot and painted to a reasonable standard with gloss paint.
  • Floor finishes must be sound, clean and free from trip hazards, i.e. well secured and free from rips and tears.
  • Free from Asbestos (airing cupboards, chimneys etc).

Contents and furnishing

Furniture and furnishing supplied in rental accommodation must comply with The Furniture and Furnishings (Fire) (Safety) Regulations 1988. Some materials used to fill or cover furniture, particularly old and second hand furniture may be a fire risk and often produces poisonous gases when burning, such as cyanide or carbon monoxide. For further information and details refer to. The Furniture and Furnishings (Fire) (Safety) Regulations 1988.

We require the following:

  • Curtains tracks or poles; or suitable fitting to each window.
  • Suitable light shades fitted in all habitable rooms and enclosed light fittings in bathrooms.
  • Carpet to be in good condition with suitable underlay fitted in living rooms, bedrooms and circulation areas (hall and stairways). Carpets must be properly laid and secured. Impervious flooring properly fitted in kitchen and bathroom areas. Finish being non-slip.

Windows

  • Windows must be in good working condition and open and shut properly.
  • Fixed stays (restrictors) must be provided to all windows above ground floor level to restrict opening to 100mm maximum.
  • Low level window glazing (less than 800mm above finished floor level) must be impact resistant. You can achieve this by replacing noncompliant glass with safety glass, applying safety film or fixing permanent screen protection.
  • All WC and bathroom windows without obscure glazing must be obscured with other window dressing (blind, curtain etc)

Doors

  • Doors shall be of suitable size with sufficient headroom and shall open in the direction of travel into the room, where possible.
  • Low level glazing (less than 1500mm above finished floor level) must be impact resistant (using safety glass or film).
  • We recommend doorstops are fitted to protect walls from damage if necessary.

Kitchen facilities

Kitchen units and appliances must be free from defects and in good working order. In general, kitchen facilities shall be less than twenty years old. Kitchen facilities shall comprise:

  • A cooker, oven and grill (suitably restrained, located and with splash back behind) or appropriate connection for fuel.
  • A sink with integral drainer set on a 1000mm base unit.
  • Constant hot and cold water supplies over the sink. Able to maintain 60°C.
  • A fixed impervious and readily cleansable work surface (minimum 1000 x 600mm).
  • An adequate tiled splash-back adjacent to the sink unit and work surfaces.
  • Sinks and worktops to be sealed around joints with silicone sealant.
  • A direct drainage connection to the sink with suitable water trap.
  • Waste pipes and taps to be defect free, no leaks or drips. Taps to be easy to operate.
  • Adequate storage cupboard units (minimum 0.3 m3).
  • A minimum of two double electrical sockets provided above work surfaces (excluding appliance sockets).
  • Impervious type floor covering free from defects. Plumbing/fittings must be provided to allow the installation of a washing machine, including a non-return valve fitted to the waste pipe.

Bathroom and WC facilities

Bathroom facilities must be free from defects and in good working order and in general be less than thirty years old. Sanitary facilities shall comprise:

  • A fixed bath or shower and wash hand basin with a constant supply of hot and cold water and a direct drainage connection with suitable trap. Minimum sizes: wash hand basin 500 x 400mm, bath 1700 x 700mm and shower 800 x 800mm.
  • A water closet properly connected to the drainage.
  • Shower tiling of sufficient height to protect the decoration of the wall (1.8m plus) properly sealed, and a shower screen or curtain to be supplied of a sufficient standard to prevent water damage to floor.
  • Tiled and sealed splash-backs (300 mm high) to baths and wash hand basins.
  • A towel rail and toilet paper holder.
  • There must be adequate activity space adjacent to facilities.
  • Water closets must have an available wash hand basin located on the same floor.
  • Bathrooms/WCs located off a kitchen must have a wash hand basin. Bathrooms shall not be accessed through bedrooms except for studio and one-bedroom flats where the bathroom is en suite.

Staircases and balconies

  • Stairs must not be too steep or excessively long.
  • Steps must have level, even treads and provide adequate friction. Open risers are not permitted.
  • Staircases must have suitable handrails properly constructed and fully supported. Handrail heights shall be between 900-1000mm.
  • Stairs and landings where the drop is in excess of 600mm must be guarded. The guarding must be of adequate construction with maximum openings of 100mm and designed to prevent climbing. The height of the guarding shall be 900mm.
  • Balconies must be properly constructed and guarded. The guarding must be of adequate construction with maximum openings of 100mm and designed to prevent climbing. The height of the guarding shall be 1100mm.

Dampness

The premises must be free from dampness prejudicial to the health of the occupants. This includes rising damp, penetrating damp and condensation.

Ventilation

  • Adequate permanent ventilation must be provided to all habitable rooms (a suitable open able window will achieve this).
  • Adequate permanent ventilation is to be provided to kitchens and bathrooms – if there is no window, mechanical extract ventilation must be provided.
  • We recommend humidistat controlled mechanical extractor fans are provided to kitchen and bathroom locations.

Lighting

Adequate natural and artificial lighting must be provided to all habitable rooms, stairways, circulation spaces and common parts.

Heating and thermal comfort

An efficient heating system matched to the thermal capacity of the structure must be provided. Heating facilities shall comprise:

  • Either full central heating, programmable heating or electric storage heaters. There must be a fixed heating appliance or radiator in every room. Portable gas or electric heaters are not acceptable.
  • Must be capable of maintaining 22°C in all habitable rooms and bathrooms when the external temperature is -2°C.
  • A wall-mounted convector heater must only act as a secondary form of heating and it must be connected to a fused spur.
  • Where a new boiler is required, the installation shall meet the latest Band ‘A’ rating (high
    efficiency boilers). Efficient insulation means cavities insulated where present, a minimum of 100mm loft insulation if gas programmable central heating and 200mm loft insulation if electric storage heating.
  • Where there is no loft insulation present, new insulation shall be fitted to comply with the Building Regulations, which currently require a thickness of approximately 250mm.
  • All hot water cylinders must be properly insulated.

Health and safety

If heating is provided by a district system all distribution pipe-work must be boxed-in or suitably protected. The hot water supply system shall be such that heated water can be delivered at a temperature below 46°C.

Installations

  • Installations for the supply of gas, electricity and water must be in good repair and proper working order.
  • A gas safety test certificate must be provided (Gas Safe).
  • We recommend an electrical test is completed for your own protection in accordance with NICEIC, NAPIT, ECA regulations’.
  • Sufficient electrical sockets must be provided. As a guide, the minimum number of sockets required per room:
    • Living room – 3 double sockets
    • Double bedrooms – 2 double sockets
    • Single bedrooms – 1 double socket
    • Kitchen – 2 double above work top height, plus low-level socket for fridge. Boiler to be on spur
    • Landing or hall – 1 socket
  • Where applicable the Landlords electrical supply shall be separately metered.
  • We recommend that all properties are fitted with prepayment gas and electricity meters. Meters must be accessible at all times.
  • A mains supply of drinking water must be provided to the kitchen sink.
  • A water storage tanks must be properly housed, insulated and covered.

Space Standards

The permitted occupancy of the premises shall be determined by the following space standard.

  • Room Size – Occupancy Level(persons)
  • Under 6.5msq – None
  • 6.5 – 8.4msq – One
  • 8.4 – 10.2msq – One and one half
  • Over 10.2msq – two
Housing Act 1985 Part X

(In this standard, living rooms, bathrooms and kitchens are excluded, children under ten are counted as half a person and persons aged ten and over are counted as one person)

Fire safety

Flats and bedsits in converted houses or other buildings must conform to certain standards of fire protection. Such premises are classified as Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMOs), which means a building (such as a flat) which is occupied by more than one household, but for more details see the Housing Act 2004 (section 254-260)

If the premises comprise an HMO there shall be adequate means of escape from fire and other fire precautions (see Blackpool Council Housing Enforcement Team for HMOs standards
for further guidance tel: 01253 477477; Email: customer.first@blackpool.gov.uk).

As a minimum, the following requirements apply:

  • For single dwellings a battery operated smoke detector must be fitted to the ceiling at each floor level of the dwelling circulation space. We would recommend for maximum protection that where possible a hard wired mains operated smoke detector be fitted (LD3 in accordance with LACORS)
  • In houses converted into flats (HMO’s) a system of electronically operated interlinked fire detection is required by My Blackpool Home (LD2 in accordance with LACORS).
  • A battery operated carbon monoxide detector to be fitted where there is gas central heating. We would recommend for maximum protection that where possible a hard wired mains operated detector be fitted.
  • Flat entrance doors (within conversions) which lead off the communal staircase MUST be half-hour fire resistant (conforming to BS 476) and fitted with suitable self-closing devices, intumescent strips and flexible edge some seals.
  • Where applicable kitchens must have suitable doors fitted.
  • All kitchens in HMO properties must be provided with suitably fixed fire blankets conforming to British Standards. We highly recommend the same for all properties for maximum safety precautions.
  • We recommend the removal of polystyrene tile finishes on any surface especially in kitchens.
  • To ensure escape in case of fire, deadlocks to flat entrance doors are not acceptable, but deadlocks with internal thumb-turns are acceptable.

Garden yard and access

  • External yards, paths, steps and access-ways must be in good order, even and well drained.
  • For safety the presence of external lighting should be considered where access is via a rear alleyway/external stairs.
  • There shall be no unguarded drops.
  • All boundaries must be clearly defined and enclosed by suitable walls or fences.
  • For maximum safety we recommend that garden ponds are emptied and filled, or that fencing surrounds the pond to make them safe.
  • Greenhouses must be in good condition with no broken or damaged panes. We would recommend for maximum safety and damage limitation you dismantled and remove the greenhouse.
  • Handrail fitted to external steps.
  • Garden sheds must be safe and in good order or removed. If present, they must be clear and only have items for use by the occupant.

Refuse

Adequate and suitable facilities must be provided, per household, for the storage and disposal of refuse (e.g. a dustbin and storage area for the same).

Noise

Where there are excessive noise levels (e.g. by main road, rail lines, and adjacent noise producing commercial premises) noise insulation measures shall be provided e.g. double or secondary glazing. Noise reduction material between floor levels in HMO.

Security

  • Adequate external lighting must be provided.
  • Access doors to premises must have adequate locks, and where applicable door chains and viewers.
  • Windows in accessible locations must be provided with suitable window lock.

Structure

  • The roof, chimney stacks, ceilings, walls, floors, stairs, windows, doors, rainwater goods, waste goods, drainage and external decoration must be in good repair and condition.
  • Any common parts or shared access must be in good repair and condition, including structure, access-ways, security doors and lifts.
  • Free from Asbestos (sheds etc)
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