The increasing amount of lettings regulations is making it difficult for letting agents and landlords to remain compliant and protect the safety of tenants without the help of the latest technology, according to gas safety compliance solution Gas Tag.
It said the best technology will be key in aiding agents and landlords to stay on the right side of the law over the next few years.
150 acts of Parliament and counting…
Earlier this year, the Residential Landlords Association claimed that there are now over 150 acts of Parliament containing more than 400 regulations which affect the private rental sector (PRS).
Since then, the Homes (Fit for Human Habitation) Act and the Tenant Fees Act have been introduced, with more regulations – such as mandatory electrical checks and the tightening of energy efficiency rules – set to come into force in the next few years.
“It's hugely important for letting agents and landlords to comply with all regulations, as they are in place to ensure tenants’ safety and contribute towards reducing the number of rogue operators in the industry,” said Paul Durose, founder and chief executive officer of Gas Tag.
“However, it's easy to see why some might be finding it difficult to stay on top of everything. This is also demonstrated by some local authorities' well-documented struggles to effectively enforce PRS regulations.”
Technology can help to manage compliance demands
With the number of PRS regulations continuing to increase, agents’ time and workload is more strained.
Gas Tag says this can lead to a higher chance of human error or people taking shortcuts, which could ultimately put tenants’ safety or the future of landlords’ property investment at risk.
“With time pressures on agents becoming greater, technology solutions which focus on compliance are needed now more than ever to help agents reduce risk, improve efficiency and free up more hours,” Durose explained.
“On top of this, agents with more time on their hands can focus on providing the best customer service, while staff can move away from repetitive administration tasks and return to managing the parts of the lettings process they enjoy most.”
Durose added that the right technology can also help agents to be more transparent while ensuring the rental sector is safer and more professional.
Leading the way in gas safety compliance
Gas Tag aims to help letting agents and landlords meet their gas safety requirements, make sure all gas appliances in rental property are checked annually by a Gas Safe engineer and provide renters with a gas safety certificate within 28 days of the annual check.
With a direct link to the Gas Safe Register, Gas Tag ensures the correct work has been carried out by the right engineer at the right time.
Its portal gives letting agents and landlords a real-time view of all activity, with information available on completed works, properties at risk and maintenance due dates.
“Our system removes the complications and risk of a paper-based system. Electronically-stored gas safety records are generated as the work is completed, providing an audit trail for everyone to see,” added Durose.
“This helps agents to keep on top of their workload and reduces some of the pressure when it comes to gas safety compliance.”
Gas Tag is currently working with the government and various insurance companies to ensure there is a Gas Tag in every household in the UK.