All rental houses must have smoke alarms by 1 July 2016. Landlords and tenants both have responsibilities to make sure smoke alarms are working.
Landlords are responsible for making sure that smoke alarms are always in good working order and meet the Residential Tenancies Act requirements, and also have batteries at the beginning of each new tenancy.
Failure to comply with the regulations is an unlawful act, and the landlord may be liable for a financial penalty of up to $4,000.
Tenants must replace expired batteries in smoke alarms. Tenants need to let their landlord know if there are any problems with the smoke alarms as soon as possible. Tenants must not damage, remove or disconnect the alarm.
Smoke alarm requirements
The Residential Tenancies Act requires a minimum of one working smoke alarm within 3 meters of each bedroom door or every room where a person sleeps. In a multi-story or multi-level home (including split levels), there must be a smoke alarm on each level or story. The same requirements apply to boarding houses.
A working smoke alarm is also required in caravans and self-contained sleep-outs.
All smoke alarms must be installed in accordance with placement requirements identified in the manufacturer’s instructions.
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