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Question

During the Tenancy (England) | England | Periodic and Other Visits (England)

Responsibility for chimney sweep

19 Nov 2021 | 1 comment

I am unsure who is responsible for sweeping a chimney during a tenancy as it doesn’t appear to be specifically mentioned in the tenancy. Under the tenant fees act I wasn’t sure if you could now insist on a tenant doing it. However the Warren v. Keen case seems to imply its a tenants responsibility.

Answer

1 Comment

  1. guildy

    It’s a little unclear whether Warren v Keen is applicable in modern days.

    Under landlords repairing obligations, it’s for the landlord to:

    keep in repair the structure and exterior of the dwelling-house (including drains, gutters and external pipes)

    And

    to keep in repair and proper working order the installations in the dwelling-house for space heating and heating water.

    Amongst other things.

    There is no specific rule about cleaning a chimney within the regulations, but it’s certainly the case if there were a problem with the chimney it’s for the landlord to repair (part of the structure).

    On balance, our view is that it’s a landlord’s responsibility to sweep where consent has been given to use an open fire. However, Warren v Keen may well still apply, in which case we are wrong. Our view is more taken as a precaution rather than anything else.

    We also found this useful article (which seems to follow roughly what we say).

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