Gas safety is always a hot topic for landlords – especially the rogues who cut corners by failing to look after renters.

Landlord Pritpall Singh, 44, was handed 26-week jail sentence suspended for a year and ordered to pay £1,000 costs.

She pleaded guilty to failing to carry out gas safety checks at a rented home in Preston, Lancashire.

Preston magistrates were told Singh did not co-operate with investigators from the Health and Safety Executive after they contacted her to follow up a tip-off.

After the hearing, HSE inspector Anthony Banks commented:

“If you rent property out, you must comply with requirements of gas safety regulations, including the need to have a gas safety certificate. Gas appliances should be regularly checked, as faulty appliances can kill.”

Meanwhile, landlord insurers Direct Line for Business are warning poorly maintained boilers and heating systems are feeling the strain this winter.

Claims to repair faulty boilers soared by 163% at this time of year as tenants turn up the heat.

With average insurance pay-outs of £1,200 a claim, not maintaining heating and hot water systems can turn out costly.

“Being caught out without heating in the winter can be particularly unpleasant, so landlords should make sure their properties have fully serviced boilers to help ensure their tenants don’t have heating problems,” said a spokesman for the company.

“Landlords are legally responsible for securing a safety certificate for gas appliances each year and they also need to ensure the heating and hot water systems are maintained and functioning properly.”

Direct Line and the Health and Safety Executive also caution landlords to employ accredited engineers to look after heating systems.

Technicians should have qualifications from: