OPEN LETTER TO LANDLORDS AND AGENTS FROM MINISTER OF STATE FOR HOUSING
Rt Hon Christopher Pincher MP, Minister of State for Housing has written an open letter to all landlords and agents in England with advice on how to enact the government’s Winter Plan to tackle rising cases of Covid-19.
The following is extracted from the letter:
Key messages for Landlords
If you have responsibility as a landlord, whether in the Social Rented Sector or Private Rental Sector, we ask that you help us in our efforts to encourage behaviours to help combat the virus and cascade the message of the importance of good ventilation to your residents. Included in this letter is a summary of the key messages for residents, from the guidance, and a toolkit of additional materials to cascade through relevant channels.
To support the health of your residents, there are several things you, as a landlord, should do to enable ventilation in and around your residents’ homes:
- Ensure that all habitable rooms have functioning openable windows (including providing replacement keys where these have been misplaced/lost) – ideally with opening areas of at least 1/20th of the floor area;
- Ensure that all bathrooms/kitchens have either functioning openable windows and/or (preferably both) appropriate functioning extract ventilation;
- Consider installing positive pressure or constant run ventilation systems to ensure there is adequate background ventilation and to reduce the likelihood of condensation, and ensure that such systems are operating effectively, with filters etc replaced at appropriate intervals;
- Ensure that tenants have clear instructions and understand how to operate ventilation and heating systems, and are advised on the best ways to achieve a healthy and economic balance of heating, ventilation and moisture production within the home;
- Ensure that problems with damp are fully investigated and addressed promptly.
We also request that you prioritise as far as possible any planned or known works that might improve ventilation, such as repairing broken safety catches on windows for those concerned about security or a fall hazard