A fire risk assessment is a report that identifies the fire hazards in your building and what you need to do to protect people from the threat of fire.
You may wonder if you need to complete a fire risk assessment in your commercial, rental, or residential property. This article will help you understand when a fire risk assessment is required.
Do I need a fire risk assessment for a rental property?
A fire risk assessment isn’t a legal requirement for all rental properties.
If your property is a ‘large HMO’, you will need to provide proof of a written fire risk assessment to be licensed by your local council. By a large HMO, we mean a rental property that contains five or more tenants consisting of more than one family unit, with shared bathroom, toilet, and kitchen facilities.
If your property is a smaller HMO, you will need to check with your local council. Some councils require that all HMOs are licensed, while others only require that larger HMOs are licensed.
If you are the landlord of a block of flats, you will need a fire risk assessment in place. This fire risk assessment must be written down if you have more than four residents.
A ‘single private dwelling’ (i.e. a private property rented by a single family unit) does not need fire risk assessments by law.
Do I need a fire risk assessment for a commercial property?
A fire risk assessment is a legal requirement if you are responsible for a commercial building like an office, school, warehouse, or store.
If you have more than five employees, you will need to keep a written record of your fire assessment.
Do I need a fire risk assessment with fewer than five employees or residents?
Yes, but you don’t need a written record of it. However, we still recommend writing it down, as this provides evidence that the fire risk assessment has been completed, for example, if you need to claim on your insurance.
You may also need a written record if your local fire and rescue service tells you to, or if you have a license under enactment in force.
Are the rules for fire risk assessments in Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland the same as England?
Wales and Northern Ireland are covered by the same legislation as England, so the law is the same.
Scotland is covered by different legislation. The law is the same except for one key difference. In Scotland, fire risk assessments apply to all premises. This means fire risk assessments are a legal requirement for all rental properties regardless of size and who lives there.
How do I get a fire risk assessment?
A fire risk assessment can be carried out by anyone that’s ‘competent’. This means someone who knows enough about fire safety to ensure the fire risk assessment is completed thoroughly and accurately.
This means you or anyone in your organisation can complete a fire risk assessment if you have the knowledge to do so. Alternatively, you can save time and ensure peace of mind by asking a professional fire risk assessor to complete a fire risk assessment on your behalf.
Hawkesworth Fire Risk Assessments
We carry out fire risk assessments for businesses and landlords across the country, providing a written report with recommendations you can implement to make your building safe.
Fully accredited and with thirty years of experience, we’re the fire risk assessors you can trust. Contact us today to find out more and to arrange your fire risk assessment.