As a commercial landlord, it is your legal responsibility to ensure that your tenants are not only safe and happy, but that the commercial property you are renting out is also secure and free from any hazards.
With this in mind, you should take the time to fully understand your legal obligations to avoid compromising your tenancy agreement. From the moment you hand over the keys to your property, you should be aware of your responsibilities to avoid potential issues arising in the future.
We’ve created a guide outlining some of your responsibilities when it comes to securing commercial properties.
Is a landlord responsible for a broken lock?
In any property, security should always be a top priority, and this is especially true of commercial buildings, which tend to be home to high value stock, expensive equipment, and important documents.
With this in mind, it is a landlord’s responsibility to make all repairs to the structure and exterior of a commercial building, including broken locks on doors and windows. All locks must be in sound working order and they must also be suitable for the building they occupy.
At the same time, all windows, exterior buildings and other entry points should all have sufficient locks that will deter criminals from entering the property.
Who is responsible for your security system?
There are a whole host of security products that have been developed to deter criminals and prevent crime.
And, thanks to significant advances in technology, these systems can be integrated in all areas of commercial properties, using light, noise and recording to deter criminals from entering the building.
From motion activated night-lights and sophisticated alarm systems through to security cameras and sensors, there are lots of ways to optimise the security of your commercial property. You can read our blogs on Security Cameras or Smart Home Security to learn more.
Although the level of security offered by landlords often stops at ensuring windows and doors lock securely, despite crime being at an all-time high, it is worthwhile investing in further deterrents.
After all, it is a landlord’s reasonability to ensure that a building is secure and that appropriate control measures are in place, which often requires further investment in access control measures that will prevent burglaries and crime.
What are the landlord’s legal obligations?
The Housing Health and Safety Rating System (HHSRS) outlines 29 hazards that all landlords must be aware of in order to protect their tenants, including “danger by intruders.” This means that security should always be taken extremely seriously. To learn more about the 29 hazards Click Here.
In addition to this, Section 11 from the Landlord and Tenant Act 1985 states that all landlords must commit to making scheduled visits to the property they are renting out in order to conduct thorough inspections, make any necessary repairs, and keep on top of general maintenance. View the Tenant Act 1985 for more information.
This is also the ideal opportunity to make sure that all existing locks are secure, as they can often succumb to everyday wear and tear, which can put your property at risk. Whether you decide to take responsibility for the repairs, or you appoint an appropriate tradesman or letting agent, you must ensure that the property is safe and secure.
Of course, regular visits to the property will also allow you to check that all security measures and equipment is in full working order.
For more security advice, please take a look at our Security Tips Page